Neath MP Peter Hain has backed the Fair Pensions for All campaign protesting against the savage cuts to public service pensions by the Coalition Government. Meeting with fellow MPs and Union General Secretaries, including Mark Serwotka of the PCS, Mr Hain was delighted to show his support against the proposed cuts to public sector pensions.
“The danger here is that the short term gains that this Government is obsessed with will be offset in the longer term,” said the Neath MP “What we may see is that many public sector workers will opt out if they end up paying through the nose for a much smaller pension. This coupled with the collapse of private sector pensions over the last two decades means that millions more people will be dependent upon pension credit to top up their state pension, resulting in a much larger burden on the taxpayer and much bigger public finance deficit in the long run. It makes no sense to a Government obsessed above all with reducing the deficit regardless of the consequences. ”
“Currently the median payment in retirement for public service pensions equates to £5,600 per annum or just £100 per week – for women it can be as low as £2,600. The claim that these pensions are ‘gold-plated’, as some elements in the Government and media suggest, is unreasonable when you consider that the pension of an average private sector worker in a defined benefit scheme amounts to £5,860 per year.
Mr Hain said “This is an example of the Tory led Government’s attempts to spin and distort the reality of pensions in this country. Their cuts to public pensions and services will create increasing desperation.”
“Private sector pensions have declined dramatically over the last decade, from when almost a half of the workforce was on a workplace pension, to a situation where now there is only a third. The taxpayer will then lose out as they will have to endure the resultant costs due to an increase of means tested benefits, greater health and social care costs, and the inevitable increase in pensioner poverty.”