A Conservative think tank report which argues the pension age should rise to 75 has sparked concern from former pensions minister Ros Altmann, who says the idea is “shocking”.
The Centre for Social Justice report wants the pension age to rise to 70 by 2028, and to 75 by 2035, arguing that the UK is not responding to the potential and needs of an ageing workforce.
It recommends supporting older people and employers by increasing access to training and flexible working, to enable older workers to remain in employment for longer.
The attempt to reduce “involuntary worklessness” should follow on from a number of support mechanisms being put in place, the report argues.
It’s claimed that for people who are vulnerable and marginalised employment builds financial self-reliance and offers a step away from marginalisation and state dependence.
A main aim of the scheme is to cut pension costs, while boosting the UK’s gross domestic product.
Ros Altmann said the scheme “must not be allowed to happen”, commenting: “Major changes in pension attitudes are required due to big life expectancy differentials.
“Using age as a strict cut off is not good policy.”
Baroness Altmann, a pensions expert, also said that while the plan might be “a great way to save public money” it would cause a great deal of hardship, and said there must be contingency for people who could not work into old age.
Claims in the report that working into old age can potentially improve health have also been called into question.