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'I feel like we're being considered a draw on the State'

BETH Nunan (77), like many pensioners, has noticed a sharp drop in her income due to the changes in the Budget.

Yesterday, she issued a cautious welcome to the decision to introduce a lower 4pc universal social charge (USC) rate for those holding a medical card.

"It will be welcome . . . but we don't trust the Government, they'll take it some other way," she said.

The pensioner said the drop from 7pc USC tax to 4pc for those holding a medical card would not ensure success at the polls.

"All they are trying to do is buy votes. We have been landed with debt we never created, instead of enjoying being old in a country where we lived all our lives.

"My income is quite low. I've noticed it getting worse. I noticed in my last cheque that it had gone down an awful lot," she said.

"I have only my husband's pension as I left work in 1958 when you had to leave the civil service when you got married.

"It is the extras you can't buy. I own my own house. You just notice that you are getting poorer, you notice what those retiring from government are getting.

"The gap between the rich and the poor has increased like a third world country. I feel we are being considered a draw on the State."

Ms Nunan blames the Government for "not keeping their eye on the ball" for the surge in unemployment.

"I am sad, I just know what those people will go through -- especially when you are older and on your own. We are creating a country of emigration again."

Irish Independent