As the cost-of-living crisis rages on, pensioners have told The Mirror that the state pension increase is simply not enough. Retired teacher Sue called the minimal increase ‘insulting pensioners’
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The government has been accused of “ignoring” the elderly after the state pension rose just 3.1% today – half the rate of inflation.
The full old basic state pension has risen from £137.60 to £141.85 a week, while the new state pension has risen from £179.60 to £185.15.
That means just an extra £4.25 in the pockets of struggling pensioners if they’re in the old scheme, or £5.55 for those on the new State Pension.
But as the cost-of-living crisis continues to grip families, pensioners have told The Mirror the state’s pension increase is simply not enough.
Retired teacher Sue, who is claiming the basic state pension, turns 80 in October and called the tiny increase “insulting retirees”.
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“I don’t think the government cares,” said Sue, who lives in North Yorkshire with her husband, 81.
“We’ve been working hard and thought we’d have a comfortable retirement, but things are looking up. Our gas bill is particularly expensive and has risen sharply.
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“We live out of town so we need a car to get everywhere, but gas is expensive. I need regular eye checks. The cost increases never end.
“Food has gone up too – and all at a time when MPs have been paying themselves a raise. I’m just angry.”
Mirror reader Phyllis also echoed Sue’s concerns.
“The way successive governments have behaved towards pensioners is disgraceful,” she said.
“Especially this one, by being deprived of those who have contributed to their pensions all their lives and at a time of high inflation.”
Under the old triple ban, the statutory pension would have increased by 8%, but this has been temporarily abolished for a year in favor of a double ban.
The Triple Lock Pledge guarantees that the state pension will increase each April in line with inflation, earnings, or by 2.5%, whichever is greater.
Here’s how to prepare for retirement
But in September the government confirmed it would not take wage growth into account as many people return to work in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
There were hopes that Chancellor Rishi Sunak may have done a U-turn in his spring statement last month by not reinstating the triple lockdown on the state pension until April 2023.
“The government should abide by the agreement on pensions,” said reader Rosemary Thompson.
“Take care of the people who are struggling in this country first. I think they should all agree to a pay cut for themselves.
“I am disgusted with everything this administration has done over the past two years.”
Retirees’ concerns come as households battle the worst cost-of-living crisis in 60 years.
Energy bills were the biggest hit after Ofgem raised the energy price cap by £700 for someone with typical consumption. Council taxes and water bills have also skyrocketed.
You may also have noticed that your mortgage payments and cellphone and broadband bills have also increased.
Meanwhile, inflation has just climbed to 6.2% – well above the government’s 2% target – and there are forecasts for it to rise further this year.
Caroline Abrahams, Director of Charities at Age UK, said: “With inflation now at over 6%, increasing the state pension by 3% looks extremely mean.
“To make matters worse, the government’s response to the crippling price hikes in its recent spring statement was weak, to say the least.
“Anyone on a low fixed income, including millions of retirees, will be desperate for how to keep their bills under control.”
A spokesman for the Department for Works and Pensions said: “We recognize the pressures people are facing with the cost of living which is why we are providing £22billion in support over the next financial year to help.
“This includes helping over 11 million pensioners with their energy bills through our winter fuel payments, cutting fuel taxes and helping households through our £9.1 billion energy bill rebate.
“The full annual amount of the basic State Pension is now over £2,300 higher than in 2010 and we urge pensioners to check whether they are also entitled to a pension credit.”
https://www.mirror.co.uk/money/retirees-disgusted-425-state-pension-26688003 Pensioners 'disgusted' by £4.25 increase in state pension amid 'never-ending' price increases