Armed Forces (Pensions and Benefits)

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 11:43 am on 8th March 2011.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Steve Rotheram Steve Rotheram Labour, Liverpool, Walton 11:43 am, 8th March 2011

I have listened carefully to the Minister, and I understand the argument that we had in the main Chamber about deficit reduction. It is not possible to throw the old line that we are deficit deniers—I am stating publicly that I understand the rationale—because if that were the case, a proposal that was time-bound until the deficit was pared down would have got some support across the Chamber. However, that is not what is being proposed. As I mentioned, it is necessary to take cognisance of the fact that, because our forces personnel and their widows draw pensions at a much earlier age, the proposed changes are compounding the problem. It is not comparing apples with apples; it is not even comparing Cox’s with Cox’s. A completely different set of comparators must be used, because armed forces pensions are drawn at such an early age.