Smyth expects progress to be made on ending pension inequality

FullSizeRenderFianna Fáil TD for Cavan-Monaghan Niamh Smyth says she expects the Government to make progress on reversing the 2012 pension contribution changes.  Almost 35,000 people, including 25,000 women have seen their pension payments reduced as a result of the move by the Fine Gael-Labour Government.

Deputy Smyth was commenting after a meeting of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Social Protection where Minister Regina Doherty suggested that she expects the Government to move on this matter, and outline a roadmap to ending this blatant discrimination.

“I am pleased that, at last, Minister Doherty and the Government are seeing sense on this matter, and have listened to Fianna Fáil”, said Deputy Smyth.

“Thousands of people have been affected by this regressive move, and women in particular, have borne the brunt of this discrimination.

“Fianna Fáil has stated that if additional funding becomes available, either through either day to day savings in the Department of Social Protection, further reduced unemployment or an increased surplus in the Social Insurance Fund, that priority should be given to reversing the 2012 changes.

“We stand ready to support any regulatory or legislative changes needed to ensure that this discriminatory anomaly is corrected.  This situation cannot continue any longer without a clear, identifiable roadmap, outlined by the Government.

“This is a complex issue, and may unearth other anomalies in the pension system. However, it is an example of discrimination, and one which a fair and equal republic cannot support or sustain,” concluded Deputy Smyth.