Published On: Sat, Nov 11th, 2023

Fury over state pension ‘injustice’ as 500,000 miss out on benefits increase | Personal Finance | Finance

A Green politician has called out the “injustice” that 500,000 do not receive the yearly payment increase because of where they live.

People only get the increase in April if they live in certain countries, while other places which are popular destinations for migrating Brits are excluded, such as Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Baroness Natalie Bennett, who formerly led the Green Party, has campaigned against the frozen pensions policy since 2014.

She told : “Frozen pensions are not a result of a policy decision, rather historical accidents. And they are a clear and massive injustice, which leaves some people in desperate straits.

“And while some are ‘rescued’ in terms of income by the nations in which they live, that is a clear abrogation of UK responsibilities. People paid into a pension; they should have a right to receive it.”

To receive the yearly uprating, a person must live in either:

  • the European Economic Area
  • Gibraltar
  • Switzerland
  • A country that has a social security agreement with the UK.

The Green Party advocates bringing in a citizen’s pension, an unconditional payment to all Britons, with the yearly uprating linked to earnings.

Baroness Bennett said: The Green Party believes that no older person should live in poverty, that everyone has a chance for a fulfilling, secure, comfortable life.

“That’s why in the 2015 manifesto and since, we’ve been calling for a ‘citizen’s pension’, uprated annual, paid to all pensioners, set at a level so no penioner is living in poverty.

“That policy also includes supplements for those living alone and with disabilities or special needs. People should not have to rely on means-tested benefits – which many will not or cannot apply for – to ensure freedom from want, the sometimes desperate want that too many pensioners are enduring now.

“I’ve long been pushing for more action from the government to help those missing out on Pension Credit.”

For those who do receive the yearly increase, the state pension increases each year in line with the , with payments increasing by the highest of 2.5 percent, the rate of inflation or the rise in average earnings.

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