Pensioners almost £400 worse off under Conservatives, claim Labour

Labour have claimed pensioners in Scotland will be almost £400 worse off this year due to real-terms cuts to the state pension.

The claims come as the shadow secretary for work and pensions, Jonathan Ashworth, and former prime minister Gordon Brown campaigned in Kirkcaldy yesterday ahead of the local elections on Thursday.

The two politicians met staff running a food bank in the town as Labour seek to make gains at the Conservatives expense.

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Scottish Labour are widely predicted as likely to win second place back from the Scottish Conservatives in Scotland, while the UK Labour Party is also expecting gains in England and Wales due to the ongoing Partygate scandal.

Mr Ashworth said pensioners in Scotland should vote Labour if they wish to have financial security as the cost-of-living crisis bites.

The party said almost one million pensioners are set to lost £390 this year each due to the state pension not rising in line with inflation.

The Labour Party said the 3.1 per cent increase in the state pension would lead to a real terms cut due to inflation, likely peaking at 8.7 per cent and averaging around 8 per cent across the financial year.

Jonathan Ashworth, Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, has this week visited Fife to speak to people locally about the impact of rising food, energy and petrol prices. Picture, Lisa Ferguson

Mr Ashworth said: “Twelve years of incompetent Conservative governments have left retirees across Scotland and Fife struggling to cope with the cost-of-living crisis.

“Boris Johnson is imposing the biggest real terms cut to the pension in 50 years. Coming on top of heating bills through the roof and prices rising, Boris Johnson’s pensions betrayal means many of Britain’s retirees are facing impossible choices between heating and eating.

“Labour would give older people security by using a one off windfall tax on oil and gas companies to cut household’s bills by up to £600.”

A Department for Work and Pensions spokesperson said: “The full yearly amount of the basic state pension is now over £2,300 higher than in 2010 and the Government remains committed to implementing the Triple Lock in the usual way for the remainder of the Parliament and will return next year.

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“We recognise the pressures people are facing with the cost of living, which is why we’re providing support worth £22 billion across the next financial year to help. This includes supporting over 11 million pensioners with their energy bills through our winter fuel payments, cutting fuel duty and helping households through our £9.1bn energy bills rebate and we urge people to check if they are also eligible for pension credit.”

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