Fuming that they are talking of taking away pensioner bus passes and the triple lock(314 Posts)
I'm still 40 years before I will get these, but I think we need to fight to keep these for future generations.
For many people they will have left school at 16 and worked until they were 65. Now after all those years of paying their taxes they aren't getting much back so the very least we need to do is allow them to travel and guarantee that their income will rise every year.
I think successive governments have treated the newest generation of pensioners appalling. Gordon Clown raiding the pensions pot & now the bus pass kick in the teeth.
Meh re the bus passes. In principle, I agree. It's terrible. . But if every other group in society is getting fucked over, I don't see that pensioners should be exempt.
Remember were all in this together right
Its a race to the bottom when receiving anything from the government now, yeah I agree it the least we can give them for paying into the system for as long as they have (although some pensioners get a final salary pension, some of those dont seem to be struggling and that isnt a bad thing) .
The problem you have is the government is determined to take away the self respect of anyone on any kind of low income benefit instead of treating people who are ill/disabled, looking for work with some dignity and respect.
I think bus passes ought to be better controlled.
I don't know about the rest of the country, but here in London you get your bus pass long before a lot of people are retired. I think it is ridiculous that you can still be in full time employment and yet qualify for free bus travel. I know they are gradually increasing the age but still not right.
I think there are an awful lot of very well off pensioners who shouldn't get things like free travel, heating allowance, free TV etc - I am talking those in higher tax bracket - celebs and the like. There would be more for those that really need it then.
Benefits are a safety net, not an entitlement. My parents get everything going for pensioners - they don't need it and I remind them of this regularly - that goes down well, I can assure you! But if people like my parents didn't get benefits, because they don't need them, there would be more to go round and we wouldn't need to talk about the triple lock and bus passes going for the pensioners who really need it.
I think you are deluded if you think the state pension will exist in 40 years time. I'm much older than you and when I started work at 16 my state pension age was 60, it's now 67, I expect it to keep rising. Our demographics won't support a state pension system unless we make tough choices about other areas of spending and taxation. Govts won't tax corporates more and individuals are reluctant to be taxed more themselves. I'd rather pay into a private pension then be forced to rely on the state. It wasn't just Gordon Brown that fucked up the pension system (he certainly didn't help though). Back in the early 90's they legislated so that if final salary schemes were fully funded (and a lot of them were then) they had to take pension contribution holidays. A combination of that plus a crash in asset returns suddenly meant that these schemes were running with deficits and they have never recovered. The vast majority in the private sector closed to new joiners and eventually to existing members. If those schemes had stayed open and been fully funded we wouldn't have the situation today where so many rely on the state pension and a bus pass. We could have a properly means tested state pension which is worth something and we could afford to index the payments properly.
I work in this area and the way the Govt has fucked around with pensions over the years boils my piss. Short term Govts cannot and will not make long term decisions on pensions.
Basically the govt of today (and it's not just the UK) are now all about "work above all" - so anyone who doesn't CURRENTLY work for a living is basically a thieving waster in their eyes. This includes all sick and disabled people who cannot work, and in fact all disabled people who need help to work, all children below the legal working age, and all pensioners, regardless of whether they worked until they received their pension or not (and probably all students without at least part time work).
I agree with you OP - but sadly I don't think you will find too many takers, unless they have a pensioner in their family who depends on the bus pass, or they're about to receive (or miss out) on one. If people don't see or realise the perceived need for it, then they tend to be less fussed about others losing out.
Agreed Arf. Or maybe this? LIGHT FUCKING HEARTED
I can't be that sympathetic to 65 year olds losing their freebies TBH
I wish there was a sort of two step pension system to separate the actually old and vulnerable (75 plus?) and the still healthy 65 year olds. Because there's a huge difference and I don't think 65 is nearly as "old" now as it was a few decades ago.
Working age people have born all the cuts so far, and I do understand the rhetoric of "but pensioners can't increase their income" but there's not much more they can take from working age people anymore!
i think everyone has had things pruned recently so don't see why pensioners should necessarily be any different. i think the triple lock has brought their pensions up over the last few years, but realistically can't go on for ever.
why are we giving bus passes to pensioners that are rolling in it? One of the town's nearly went bust round here because of the cost of bus passes - there are a lot of pensioners in that area
I think more should be done about encouraging old people to prepare. There are a lot of very poor women around because they've not worked for very much/if any of their lives
Cannot agree with you on bus passes. The reason bus services are being cut all over is that most of the users don't pay. How can we expect operators to cope? It grates with me to hear retired MIL going on about how she jaunts about for free everywhere now (whilst saving her cash for lavish cruises).
I think they should means test the free bus passes and perhaps maintain a senior citizen reduction for all.
I honestly don't think my parents should be entitled to free bus passes and tv licence. They worked hard all their lives, they paid a lot of tax but they are also enjoying a very comfortable retirement. Perhaps if they, and others like them, were paying for these things then other pensioners could continue to receive them for free?
Now after all those years of paying their taxes they aren't getting much back
Umm, health care, roads, education - you get things back in return for your taxes your whole life. Most households receive more from the tax system than they pay in. This works because of the high earners (who really shouldn't need a free bus pass as a reward!)
I heard some statistics recently that said pensioners are the least worse off group at the moment...
There are a lot getting fuel payments, prescriptions, bus passes etc who are not in need of them.
That said, if you don't need a free bus pass financially, you probably use a car anyway and so cost very little. And the ability to work into older age very much depends on your job. Teachers, brick layers and firefighters probably age out pretty early in comparison to secretaries and architects.
You don't get a bus pass unless you apply for them. The many retired people who have cars don't apply for bus passes, so only people who need them get them, iyswim.
NI is not a prepay for your pension. It is not a funded pension scheme like a private one would be. You pay tax (NI is just tax) to pay for current pensions, healthcare, roads, schools etc
The triple lock is just unsustainable, though. It's ridiculous to imagine that pensions should go up and up regardless of what's happening in the economy at large. This policy was a well-meaning and important response to the problem of pensioner poverty. Happily, pensioners are no longer disproportionately likely to be in poverty, and so it's time for the policy to be revisited.
I agree that the bus passes should stay simply because means testing them would be so expensive and so counter-productive. It is hard for it not to rankle a little when it turns out that colleagues at work who earn several multiples of my salary and who will retire onto final salary pensions that I pay for travel to work for free, or when it turns out my parents in law got the bus back from the airport for free after coming back from their three week safari in Kenya.
At 60, this will affect me sooner than many on MN, but I still think ending these is the right thing to do - I know it was originally done to secure the "grey vote" but it's just not right to have one part of the population feather-bedded when so many others are suffering
That said, if it wasn't for the appalling government waste there'd probably be more than enough for everyone - but that's another thread of course
I'm not in favour of many of this govt's proposals / cuts, but I think abolishing the free bus pass is very short-sighted. If we want the "big society" model of everyone chipping in, volunteering, serving the community, then pensioners who can't run a car will rely on the bus pass to (for example) do the weekly shop, visit family, volunteer.
The bus pass must be one of the cheapest benefits out there ito real cost, surely? Why cut it?
Now after all those years of paying their taxes they aren't getting much back
And on this - lots of people seem to take this attitude that their pension is the first thing they get 'back' (which is also why people pretend the state pension isn't a benefit). This is very unlikely to be true: not that many people are net contributors even during their working lives, particularly if they had children.
My parents gave up driving because it was so much easier to catch the bus, I dread to think how long they would have carried on otherwise. If the free bus passes are stopped I can imagine plenty of pensioners driving who aren't really that safe on the roads. It will also probably kill off our town centre as the pensioners seem to be the only ones there midweek.
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