I recognise the contribution pensioners have made, and continue to make, to British society. We must ensure that everyone has security and dignity in their retirement.
A range of steps have been taken to support older people. The triple lock means the basic State pension rises by inflation, earnings, or 2.5 per cent, whichever is highest. The basic State Pension is now over £1,600 a year higher than a decade ago. The triple lock will remain in place for the duration of this Parliament.
Alongside this, members of Defined Contribution pension schemes are no longer forced to buy an annuity if they do not want one, and the punitive 55 per cent tax rate for those drawing down more than their tax free lump sum has been scrapped.
Additionally, there are also a number of pensioner benefits, including Winter Fuel Payments, free bus passes, and free prescriptions. Cold Weather Payments have also been increased, and the Warm Home Discount introduced to provide vulnerable pensioners with a £140 rebate on their energy bills.
I hope this reassures you that support is being offered to pensioners who have worked hard, saved and done the right thing. Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.