‘Not enough!’ Britons call for state pension to align with Living Wage at £380 per week

Retirement expert advises people to learn about state pensions

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The petition, published on the Government’s website, asserts all state pensioners need further financial support. It has called upon the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to level up the retirement sum which is set to increase by 3.1 percent this year.

If the state pension were to align with the National Living Wage, it would mean the sum increasing to £380 per week.

At present, the full basic state pension is £137.60 per week, while the full new state pension is £179.60 per week.

Some people may get less than the full new state pension if they were contracted out before April 6, 2016.

The petition reads: “The Government should raise the state pension to match the yearly equivalent of the National Living Wage.

“The NLW is rising to £9.50 an hour – i.e. £19,760 a year for F/T 40 hour per week.

“We are told this is needed to live, yet pensioners are expected to live on a state pension of £7,376 a year.”

The petition has asserted the state pension is “not enough to live on”, calling for the Government to “level up” to provide more support for older people.

It adds: “All people regardless of standing are supposed to be looked on as equal, this is clearly not the case.

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“Most people have paid into the state pension through National Insurance contributions during their working life.

“Most pensioners live active lives and have to pay the same bills as others have to find money for but are expected to do it on less than half the income of those on the National Living Wage, this is unacceptable.”

In the last few hours, the petition has greatly increased in signatures, and at the time of writing, some 6,351 people have signed.

However, it still falls short of the 10,000 signatures needed to trigger a formal response from the Government.

A total of 100,000 signatures are needed for a Parliament petition to be considered for debate in the Commons.

Many state pensioners are worried about the rising cost of living, which is set to bite hardest from tomorrow when bills increase.

In particular, energy bills are set to rise by  up to 54 percent, leaving many concerned as to whether they will be able to cope. 

One pensioner, Diane Skidmore from London, spoke to Sky presenter Kay Burley this morning about her energy bill concerns.

She said: “Up until now, I already don’t turn my heating on and my grandchildren don’t visit.

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“That’s because I can’t have big bills. I’m not going to get in to debt, and I’m not going to do credit cards.

“What am I supposed to do next? How can I use any less? It’s impossible.

“It affects my mental health, because it worries me so much and no one is doing anything.”

Previously responding to the petition, a DWP spokesperson told Express.co.uk: “We are committed to ensuring that older people are able to live with the dignity and respect they deserve.

“From April, the full yearly amount of the basic state pension will be over £2,300 higher than in 2010 and we continue to encourage those eligible for Pension Credit, and the wide range of other benefits it can provide, to make a claim.”

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