“Equality for women demanded in State Pension” – John Brady TD
Sinn Féin spokesperson for Social Protection John Brady TD has said that the ongoing discrimination against women in the pensions system must end.
Speaking after Age Action’s Conference on ‘Towards a Fair State Pension for Women Pensioners,’ Teachta Brady said:
“The change to the eligibility criteria for the State Pension made by Fine Gael & Labour in Budget 2012 continues to have a disproportionate impact on women at retirement.
“It was made known to the Minister at the time, Joan Burton that the changes she was about to implement were going to hit women the hardest however, the Minister went ahead regardless.
“So far, the changes made to the eligibility criteria for the State Pension are affecting 36,000 women who are on reduced rates of the State Pension.
“The Department of Social Protection have not provided the actual rates that these women are receiving but we do know in some cases, they are receiving substantially less than the full rate of €233.
“The conference this morning heard from one lady who has lost €1500 annually on her reduced State Pension – this is only one example of the reality faced by thousands of women across the State.
“The widening gender pension gap of 41% within the State Pension was re-iterated at the Conference today but the Government are yet to show any intention to tackle this.
“Last December, I introduced a Dáil motion calling on the Government to ensure that equality for women would be front and centre to pension reform, the restoration of the pre-2012 bands and rates as well as acknowledging the disproportionate impact changes have had on women.
“This motion was rejected by Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil who chose to waste their opportunity in addressing pension equality for women.”