Support the national pensions lobby

BECTU members are being encouraged to support the national pensions lobby of Parliament on Wednesday 22 October 2008.

The event, organised by the National Pensioners Convention (NPC), the TUC and the trade union movement, is focussed on three key demands:

National pensions lobby flyer

  • the raising of the basic state pension above the poverty level
  • the restoration of the link between the state pension and earnings/prices
  • universal payment of the state pension.

Dignity in retirement is something we all aspire to; however the reality for some of today’s pensioners is poverty in retirement. This situation is set to become much worse in the current economic climate if the government takes no action.

“Pensioner poverty has risen in the last year by 300,000, taking the total to 2.5m older people living on less than 60% of median population income before housing costs (the same figure as in 1997/8). For a single pensioner this equals £151 a week.” advises the NPC.

Pensioner poverty is also an equality issue affecting more women than men.

“The government admits that women’s pensions are a national disgrace with the overwhelming majority of existing women pensioners receiving less than a full state pension.” says the NPC.

BECTU’s Gerry Morrissey will join other trade union leaders to address the rally at Westminster Hall on 22 October.

“The state pension is a problem today and it will be a problem in future, both generally and for many of our members, unless we secure improvements now. That’s why BECTU is pleased to lend its support to this important national lobby.” commented Gerry Morrissey.

Pensions lobby programme

The lobby of Parliament provides a unique opportunity for BECTU members to speak directly to their MPs and to secure their support for improvements to the state pension.

BECTU members who plan to lobby their MP should write now asking if he/she will be available on the day to be lobbied. Letters should be addressed to your MP, House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA.

The state pension was first introduced in 1908 and so marks its centenary this year.

Details and background

Further details and background to the lobby:

Friday 10 October 2008