Continued from two previous posts.
In making his New Year announcement on maintaining the pension triplelock until 2020, the Prime Minister said it was a choice based on his values – “I want people, when they reach retirement, to know they can have dignity and security in their old age”.
He obviously has not been out much lately. Certainly not to the NHS with hospitals overflowing with older people. Nor to Social Services, overwhelmed by demands for domiciliary care they can no longer afford. Definitely not to the many thousands of isolated older people, lonely and cold in their own homes in the community.
Meanwhile, the very next day, his Chancellor unravels the Prime Minister’s promise by saying that major cuts are still to come in the welfare benefits budget, which will hit the lest well off pensioners hardest. At the same time, Iain Duncan Smith, the Work and Pensions Secretary, added that he wanted to remove the entitlement to winter fuel allowances, free bus passes and free TV licenses for better off pensioners.
There won’t be quite so much dignity and security left when all this double talk about the triplelock has finished.