“If we want dignity for all in old age, then it has to be paid for. That’s why I believe Labour in opposition should establish an Older People’s Commission to create a new deal for older people, with funding options that can be discussed throughout the country in advance of 2020. Honest, straight-talking politics demands open and democratic debates to resolve difficult issues.” – Jeremy Corbyn
According to Age UK:
- 1 in 7 pensioners (1.6 million or 14% of pensioners in the UK) live in poverty, defined as having incomes of less than 60% of median income after housing costs.
- A further 1.2 million pensioners have incomes just above the poverty line (more than 60% but less than 70% of median income).
- Low income in retirement is often linked to earlier low pay, or time out of employment, e.g. due to caring responsibilities, disability or unemployment.
- Women are more likely to be in poverty than men, and older pensioners (especially those aged 85+), single people living alone, private tenants and Asian pensioners are at particular risk.
Labour are committed to ensuring the welfare of pensioners by its investment pledges.
- health and social care
- transport (free passes)
- affordable energy
The “triple lock” brought in to protect the state pension – by ensuring its value always rises by the highest measure of inflation, wages or 2.5 per cent – could now be abandoned under Teresa May’s Conservative government. The Labour party will continue to challenge this.