Thomson Condemns Yet Another Westminster Pensions Scandal

Thomson Condemns Yet Another Westminster Pensions Scandal

Published date : 28 September, 2021

Local MP Richard Thomson has condemned the UK Government after an investigation by the National Audit Office uncovered that 134,000 pensioners have been underpaid by a total of over £1billion in State Pension. 
It is estimated that each pensioner affected missed out on a total of £8,900 and most pensioners affected are likely to be women. 

The revelations come as the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman published a report earlier in the summer which found the UK’s Department for Work and Pensions was guilty of maladministration in the case of the WASPI scandal, which saw women born in the 1950s given little or no notice of changes to their pension age entitlement. 
The UK already has lowest state pension in Europe.  UK pensioners currently receive just 28% of the average working wage when they retire – whereas in contrast, pensioners in Luxembourg and Austria receive 90% of the average working wage. 
Pensions in independent countries similar to or smaller than Scotland receive a much higher proportion of the average working wage (64%) than UK pensioners (28%) and more than the average of countries in north-west Europe (62%). 

Commenting, Gordon MP Richard Thomson said: 

“This billion-pound blunder is just the latest in a long line of failings from the UK’s Department for Work and Pensions, with pensioners being left to pick up the pieces of a broken system. 

“It has only been two months since the Parliamentary Ombudsman published a scathing report which found multiple instances of maladministration at the DWP over the mishandling of the change in state pension age for 1950s-born women.  
It is quite disgraceful that it has taken another investigation, this time by the National Audit Office, to expose this injustice which incompetence and poor decision-making in Westminster means women are once again bearing the brunt. 
“These mistakes and cruel policies along with the triple-lock manifesto promise betrayal put beyond doubt the fact that pensioners are being treated atrociously by this Tory Government.  It is time for the Tories at Westminster to get a grip and make up for their multiple betrayals to our pensioners - including ensuring all those who have been underpaid their state pensions get the money they are owed. 

"The Better Together campaign said in 2014 that if Scotland stayed in the UK our pensions would be protected.  We are now in a situation where the UK Government offers the least generous pension of any country in north-west Europe, and one of the lowest in the developed world, is increasing the pension age at a rapid pace and is undercutting pensioners to the tune of £1 billion.  It is clear that only an independent Scotland can protect pensions." 

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