– Fewer than half of reviews have resulted in increased payments –
Fianna Fáil TD for Cavan-Monaghan, Brendan Smith, has said that old people are still feeling the hurt from changes to the State pension brought in by the last Fine Gael/Labour government.
The changes, introduced in 2012, disproportionally impacts women, resulting in reduced pension payments. Last year Fine Gael promised to review the anomaly, but figures provided to Fianna Fáil reveal that fewer than half of those reviewed to date have seen their payments increase.
Deputy Smith commented, “The changes to pension entitlements brought in by the Fine Gael-Labour government in 2012 were mean-spirited and cruel and have negatively impacted thousands of pensioners in Cavan-Monaghan. Fianna Fáil rejected this policy and campaigned to get it reversed, ultimately leading to the decision by Minister Doherty to review the current situation.
“However, the latest information from the Department of Employment Affairs & Social Protection is extremely disappointing. Around 90,000 pensioners are having their documentation reviewed. To date, just over 77,000 reviews have been completed but only 32,000 pensioners have received an increase in their pension.
“Pensioners have contacted my offices with concern over delays in a decision and no increases in many cases. The government must not continue to disrespect pensioners following their own policy changes,” concluded Deputy Smith.