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Labour hits out at Govt plans for 5-year state pension age reviews

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Liam Byrne
Liam Byrne speaking in the House of Commons

Labour has hit out at Government proposals to review the state pension age every five years, suggesting it will cause needless instability.

Under state pension reforms the Government is proposing a review of the state pension age in every parliament to keep it in line with life expectancy.

Women’s state pension age will rise from 60 to 65 by 2018 to reach the same level as men. Both will increase to 66 in 2020 and 67 in 2026.

Speaking in the House of Commons at the second reading of the pensions bill today, shadow work and pensions secretary Liam Byrne said five yearly reviews could cause too much instability.

He said: “We are very concerned about the proposal to review the state pension age every five years. The goalposts have been moved a number of times on state pension age already in this parliament. We don’t think that is good for stability, certainty or long-term planning.”

Byrne also highlighting major differences in life expectancy in areas around the UK and between rich and poor. He said there must be more safeguards to stop governments from accelerating or advancing the state pension age more quickly. 

Work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith said: “What we are seeking to do is not to make it unstable but quite the contrary. We have talked about setting down a period of time people should expect to be in retirement.

”They also know that every change would require legislation so there are plenty of locks on it. Not to address this would put us out of step with everyone else such as Ireland, Spain, USA and Germany who are all doing similar things and all governments have to.”

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  1. Governments want people to plan for retirement – and then wonder why a large percentage of the population think they are a waste of time.

    It is this constant moving of the goal posts that’s why!

    First they get rid of contracting out, removing the ability to have some control, and then keep putting the state pension age up.

    These constant attacks on the retirement plans of those that actually work have to stop.

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