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Decision has left me penny-pinching as I age

Public servants have endured very severe salary and pension cuts. It is, indeed, very frightening for the low-paid finding their pensions cut.

It is also very upsetting that most people in the public service pay a class D social welfare stamp which, based on my experience, entitled me to nothing over 40 years.

Why didn’t public servants, including nurses, clerical officers, etc have a choice of paying class D or class A stamp?

Bank staff and some semi state employees pay a class A stamp and receive a social welfare pension, plus the household package and free travel at 66, as well as their private pension based on a number of years’ service.

I worked in industry for nine years and 47 weeks before going to work in the HSE as a clerical officer. I am short just five weeks for a minimum social welfare pension of 10 years. The social welfare department could not inform me of this until I was 60, and it was too late for me to do anything about it, because of ill-health.

I enquired if I could become a voluntary contributor to class A, but because I was paying class D in employment, could only contribute voluntary to class D.

I feel the requirements for the social welfare pension, ie — the number of years to qualify, should have remained the same since the day I first paid a class A stamp. Changing the goal posts at 60 is very unfair.

This decision has left me penny-pinching to survive in my old age.

J M O’Sullivan

Dooradoyle

Limerick


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