Scottish National Party (SNP) Media Release:
50, 000 of Scotland’s poorer pensioners who have saved for their retirement are now substantially worse off due to UK government cuts.
Research by the House of Commons Library has shown 50,000 Scottish pensioners have lost benefits since 2010 with a cut of £90 million to Savings Credit, and pensioners across Scotland are set to lose out as the benefit is to be scrapped for all new pensioners in 2016.
Savings Credit is paid to poorer pensioners who have saved for their retirement. A single pensioner could receive up to £20.52 per week, or £27.09 per week for a couple.
As set out in the White Paper Scotland’s Future, following a Yes vote the Scottish Government will provide Scotland’s pensioners with a guaranteed pension of £160 a week from 2016-17, a triple lock and the continuation of Savings Credit.
Commenting, SNP spokesperson for Work and Pensions Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP said:
“This benefit cut is hitting poorer pensioners who have planned ahead and worked hard for their retirement.
“The UK government gives the impression it wants to protect pensioners, but they have cut a massive £90 million since 2010 which is leaving tens of thousands of pensioners in Scotland worse off.
“It’s a real shame that Scottish pensioners who have put savings away for their old age are being hit in this way.
“Scotland has paid more in taxes in each and every one of the last 30 years than the rest of the UK, much of it through the efforts of those who are now in retirement.
“Following a Yes vote in September, we can make Scotland’s wealth work for the people who live here- which includes a fairer welfare system and a better deal for our pensioners.”
House of Commons Library research shows:
Between May 2010 and November 2013, the number of people (beneficiaries in Scotland) receiving Savings Credit reduced by 50,740.
In May 2010 the maximum award available for Savings Credit was £27.09 per week for a couple and £20.52 per week for a single claimant.
Based on the quarterly caseload data, the total amount of Pension Credit paid to Savings Credit recipients in Scotland fell by around £90 million between 2010/11 and 2012/13.
The average weekly Pension Credit award paid to all claimants receiving some Savings Credit fell by £4.68 (from £40.67 to £35.99)- this is £243.36 per year.
Of the 50,000 fewer people receiving Savings Credit since 2010-11, those continuing to receive Savings Credit saw their total Pension Credit award fall by £243.36 per year and the total amount of Pension Credit paid to Savings Credit recipients in Scotland fell by around £90 million between 2010/11 and 2012/13.