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Government played down numbers of older people on reduced State Pensions due to 2012 changes – Brady

8 November, 2017 - by John Brady TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Employment Affairs & Social Protection John Brady TD has said that the actual number of older people affected by the 2012 pension changes is 42,278 as opposed to the 35,000 stated by Government.

Speaking after receiving a reply to his Parliamentary Question on the matter, Teachta Brady said:

“The Department’s own records show that 42,278 pensioners have been affected by the rate band changes introduced by Fine Gael and Labour from September 2012. Of this figure, 26,598 are female and 15,680 are male.

“I sought a breakdown of the number of men and women affected by the 2012 changes as well as a breakdown by County which shows that 10,514 of these pensioners live in Dublin, 7,116 women and 3,398 men.

“At no stage in all of the discussions on this issue did Minister Doherty disclose the actual number of people impacted by the 2012 changes, despite her own Department having the figure. Instead, the Dáil was misled on this.

“The fact is that 42,278 pensioners are receiving a reduced State Pension as a direct consequence of changes made to the calculation of the State Pension is outrageous. Fine Gael and Labour took this decision with the absolute knowledge that women would be disproportionately impacted and this is evident in the fact that almost two-thirds of the 42,278 pensioners are women.

“The Social Welfare Bill 2017 is due to go before Cabinet next week. We need to see the Minister’s plans to rectify this discrimination in this Bill. If it is not there, Sinn Féin will amend the Bill and we fully expect Fianna Fáil to support such an amendment given their recent Dáil motion calling for action. This issue needs to be addressed immediately, 42,278 pensioners are waiting.”

Note: Please see the PQ response in question attached 

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