Pension age rule change is not fair

Bexhill Observer letters
Bexhill Observer letters

From: Maureen Burke, Terminus Avenue, Bexhill

I am not sure if you know but there is a petition being signed by hundreds of thousands of women demanding that the pension age be reverted back to 60.

When I started work in 1973 the government and I entered an agreement. I would pay my Tax and NI every week and in return when I reached 60 I would be given a pension.

The government broke this agreement and we have nowhere to take this to apart from the government (who made the changes) and the papers.

I have worked since 1973 in fulltime employment and paid my Tax and NI every week or month.

Tomorrow I will be 60 and I should be retiring, now I have another six years of work to trawl through. How many women or men for that matter live to be 66 or 67?

Where does all the money we paid into our state pensions go to?

You only need 35 or 40 years (depending on which rules they change again) of NI contributions to get a full pension yet I am expected to work 50 years to get mine. This is just not right.

While I see that the retirement age had to go up because of all the spending the governments had taken over I think it is unfair that I and all pre-pensioners should suffer. People now have to stay in education till 18 and don’t pay NI till 21 I didn’t have that either – I had to start work at 16 and pay NI from the start.

I have so many friends and family who never get to draw their pensions yet all those who are claiming benefits still get theirs at the age of 66 and still get benefits until that time.

I am angry. We women of that certain age did not know we would have to work longer nor, for that matter, did men.

You can’t just change the agreement half way through.

I am in full agreement that the pension age be brought back down and only raised when the people starting work know the conditions of the pension.

If I had known this would happen I would have contracted out of SERPS and then I could have got a private pension with a retirement age of a lot sooner that 66.