MP raises pensioners’ concerns in the Commons

Peter Aldous raises concerns that with the introduction of the single-tier pension, current pensioners will become second-class citizens.

Peter Aldous (Waveney) (Con): What steps he is taking to introduce a flat-rate state pension. [113197]

The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Steve Webb): The Chancellor confirmed in Budget 2012 that the Government will introduce a simpler, single-tier pension for future pensioners set above the basic level of the means test to better support saving for retirement—and I am pleased to say that the Prime Minister has reiterated that commitment today.

Peter Aldous: I am grateful to the Minister for that answer, but there is real anxiety among current pensioners that with the introduction of the single-tier pension they will become second-class citizens. Will he give an assurance and take that point on board?

Steve Webb: I do appreciate that point. It is often not well understood that pensioners coming down the track—tomorrow’s pensioners—are due to receive substantially higher pensions on average without our reform because the state system has been maturing. Our reforms are not doing that—it is in the system anyway—but our reforms do take the money and simplify so that today’s workers have a simpler system into which to retire.

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