NPC: State pension must be raised

17 February 2006
The National Pensioners Convention (NPC) has called for an increase in the state pension.

Millions of pensioners are living below the poverty line because of the "totally inadequate" basic state pension, a report published today said.

NPC general secretary Joe Harris commented: "The recent Pensions Commission recommendations could only offer an extra £1.36 a week on the basic state pension in 2010 – but it's too little too late."

He said that official figures reveal that more than 2.5 million older people live in poverty and more than 30,000 died last year from severe cold. A further one in seven are at risk of malnutrition.

"Improving today's state pension is the only basis for creating a long-term solution to the pension issue," Mr Harris said.

The NPC suggests that the government should "act now" to bring the state pension up by at least £114 a week for all men and women and "restore the link with earnings".

Mr Harris said: "If pension reform is to be both genuine and inclusive, the needs of today's older generation must be included."

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