McDonnell condemns attacks on ‘vulnerable’ older people
JOHN MCDONNELL has branded Tory plans to scrap winter fuel allowances for some pensioners a “savage attack,” demanding the nasty policy be dropped immediately.
Speaking to the media yesterday, the shadow chancellor said: “This is a savage attack on vulnerable pensioners, particularly those who are just about managing.
“We will not stand by and allow so many of them to be back in a situation where they have to choose whether they heat or eat.”
Shadow business secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey accused the Tories of “launching an all-out attack on pensioner incomes by abandoning the triple-lock, cutting winter fuel payments, raising the state pension age and breaking promises on social care and GP access.”
She said that if the Tories’ proposed “double” lock had been in place since 2010, pensioners would now be £330 worse off, and she warned that five in every six pensioners are set to lose their winter fuel allowance — worth up to £300.
Currently households automatically receive £100 to £300 each December if there is one person living there who has reached qualifying age.
Under the new proposals, eligibility would be related to income, however the Tories have failed to specify exactly what the threshold would be, leading to fears that pensioners on low and middle incomes would also be deprived of the payments.
To determine who receives the allowance, the Tories have proposed a means-test of households, but the test will not apply to pensioners in Scotland.