There is likely to be an increase in the number of pensioners falling into poverty in 2022 as a result of random government gestures such as the €5 pension increase. That’s according to Active Retirement Ireland, the country’s largest representative body for older people, commenting today (16.12.2021).
According the organisation, Christmas should be a peaceful, joyful time of year, but for many older people living on the state pension it is instead a time of difficult decisions when existing financial pressures are intensified. Active Retirement Ireland is encouraging the Government to take action for older people in relation to the rising cost of living.
Speaking today, Maureen Kavanagh, CEO of Active Retirement Ireland, said: “Inflation is currently at an all-time high and Active Retirement Ireland is concerned that many older people who are already having to stretch their pensions just to cover basic living costs will find themselves having to choose between essentials such as heating or groceries, and buying gifts for their families or being able to be a part of Christmas social events.
“Budget 2022’s pension increase of a flat €5 per week is grossly inadequate and does not sufficiently address the increased cost of living for older people. As a result, more and more older people in Ireland are likely to fall into poverty in 2022.”
Active Retirement Ireland has repeatedly called on the government to triple-lock the state pension, which means guaranteeing that it will increase by either a minimum of 2.5%, the rate of inflation, or average earnings growth, whichever is the largest.
The gap between the cost of living and the pension is widening every year, according to Maureen Kavanagh, who said: “By failing to act to protect older people by adequately funding and guaranteeing the state pension to provide income security for a good quality of life, the government continues to show complete disregard for the wellbeing of older people and neglect the core principles of the National Positive Ageing Strategy.
“On the back of another lonely and isolating year for older people due to the pandemic, this is especially reprehensible. Sustainable, meaningful pension reform is long overdue.”
Contact: Maisie Lynch / Kate McGovern, Alice PR & Events
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