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Increasing pension age will ‘do little to save money’ according to SIPTU

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Increasing the State pension age will “do little to save money” and will not ensure pension “sustainability”, according to SIPTU.

The trade union will tomorrow tell TDs and Senators at the Oireachtas Social Protection Committee that the Pension Commission, which has recommended the pension age should rise, used data which “considerably” over-estimated the savings from increasing the pension age.

The union argues data from the Department of Finance and the Irish Fiscal Advisory Council showed that pension age increases would “only save” between 10pc to 15pc in of the overall increase in pension expenditure.

SIPTU will tell the committee these models may “considerably over-estimate” savings as they do not take into account “off-setting costs” and impact on public finances.

The trade union will also urge the Pensions Commission to “investigate the discrepancies between savings estimates”.

It will also say the increase in the State pension age has “deepened the hardship felt by workers forced to retire from their employment at an age before which the state pension becomes payable”.

It will say “many workers” want to stay at work until they reach the State pension age because they are able to continue working and “will see a

significant drop in their income if forced to retire”.

Family Carers Ireland, a charity which represents over 500,000 carers, will also raise concerns tomorrow that people who have cared for others for over 20 years - ‘long term carers’ - do not qualify for the State pension as they have not paid the 520 contributions necessary.

“This is a particular challenge for long-term carers who have been forced to leave employment, often at a relatively young age following the birth of a child with special needs,” the charity will say.

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