Lyn Brown

Labour Party Candidate for West Ham

Moving Goalposts Again - Dec 2011

Regular readers will know I wrote about the state pension age just a few weeks ago.  Today, I find myself writing about public sector pensions.  It’s the same old story; the Government is moving the goalposts yet again and, despite the crocodile tears, ensure those on the lowest wages will be hit hardest and work longer for less.

David Cameron tried to persuade the country that public sector pensions are too generous and we can’t afford them.  Unsurprisingly, neither claim is true, according to an independent commission the Government itself set up.

The facts speak for themselves.  The average pension paid out is around £7,800, while half of women working in the public services retire on less than £4,000 a year.  That is not ‘gold-plated’.  Ask any banker.

Yet the Government tell us the lowest paid are not affected.  An estimated 60% of all part-time public sector workers who earn less than £15,000 are still set to pay more under the Government’s latest offer.  Nine out of ten are women.  Among them are the dinner ladies, care workers and many others who make such a huge, beneficial difference in our community.

Many are members of the Local Government Pension Scheme, which is a collective pot, funded from its members’ contributions and employers, paid throughout their working lives.

David Cameron needs to take some responsibility and negotiate a deal that's genuinely fair, but I fear he won’t.

The Government is revealing itself to be unreasonable and unfair.  The lowest paid continue to pay the price for this Government’s botched economic measures, while top earners and tax evaders are left alone.

Cameron and Osborne continue to fail the competence, fairness and honesty tests.

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