I have just discovered from my former employer that i am not to receive an increase this year on my pension.
I have now reached pension age and my State pension is to be £138.50 per week. My wife’s income is due to rise by £3.01 per week and her benefit – which is under threat – by 70p per week.
My work pension, after 20 years’ service, is £461.40 per month. I am in constant pain from a back injury which I sustained in a caring occupation.
I have also discovered that my Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit is also not going to be increased this year. I receive £33.60 per week for this benefit.
As I have now started to receive my state pension, I have been assessed as over the limit for rent and council tax benefit and will have to pay the full amounts for these.
This will entail a deduction from my income of £589.03 per month. Our joint savings are below £3,000.
The increase in our income is £557.71 – taking into account the introduction of my State pension.
This means I will be paying out £31.32 per month more than our income has increased by.
This does not take into account increases in utility bills, food or fuel, insurance etc.
Please don’t get me wrong. I know there are far more people who are in much greater financial difficulties than myself.
On the other hand, with tax avoidance and other dubious tactics there are many, many more who will be far better off financially. The monarch – probably one of the wealthiest people in the country – has had her grant increased by £38 million. Where is the moral justification for such inequality?
My questions to all political parties are what are you views on this inequality and what is your party going to do to address these inequalities? I do not want to hear clever political rhetoric, but clear unambiguous answers to these questions.
Your answers will help me to decide who I will be voting for at the next elections, both national and local.