Sinn Féin spokesperson on Enterprise, Trade, Employment and Workers’ Rights Louise O’Reilly TD has called on TDs from all parties, and none, to support the Sinn Féin motion in the Dáil this week, which seeks to restore the pension age to 65.
Speaking this afternoon, Teachta O’Reilly said:
“The pension age was one of the biggest issues in the election last February. Voters across the state expressed their opposition to the pension age increase throughout the election campaign.
“Despite this, the government have only just published legislation to address this matter, and if it is not passed in time the pension age will increase to 67 on January 1st 2021.
“Every worker in the state makes a considerable tax contribution throughout their working life and should have the right to retire at 65.
“Sending people who have worked hard all their lives to a dole queue at the age 65 is wrong, and it is unfair. If I am a minister in the next government, I will restore the right to retire on a pension at 65.
“That is not to say all workers want to take that opportunity to retire, others want to remain at work, where they are able and willing to do so.
“These workers should be allowed to stay working, and the mandatory retirement age should be abolished to give workers the choice to work or retire as they so wish.
“Unfortunately, due to pension changes in the past number of years, there are now over 4,000 65-year-olds in receipt of either Jobseeker’s Allowance or Jobseeker’s Benefit.
“Given there is a difference of €45.30 between the Jobseeker payments and the state pension, these people are losing €2,355.60 each year – a staggering sum of money.
“It is clear that the voters and the public want the pension age restored to 65. That is why I am calling on all TDs in the Dáil tonight to support the Sinn Féin motion to restore the state pension to 65.”