Caring for the Elderly

Part of Opposition Day — [16th Allotted Day] – in the House of Commons at 4:25 pm on 15th July 2009.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Nigel Waterson Nigel Waterson Shadow Minister, Work & Pensions 4:25 pm, 15th July 2009

I am grateful to my right hon. Friend, who makes a powerful point. The people who should always beware of the Government's Green Papers and White Papers are, of course, those who have taken the precaution of saving for their old age.

I was talking about Government spin on pensioner poverty. The truth is that 2.5 million pensioners are living in official poverty. A recent OECD report put the UK at the bottom-Ministers should listen to this-of a league table of 17 industrialised countries for its state pension provision. Another example of spin is the oft-repeated mantra by Ministers-indeed, it makes another appearance today in the amendment-that they are spending £x billion more than if pre-1997 policies had been maintained. That is, of course, grossly misleading because it assumes that if there had been a Conservative Government in the intervening years not a penny extra would have been spent on our pensioners.