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Response to Chancellor’s Statement on updated mini-budget

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Response to Chancellor’s Statement on updated mini-budget

Older People’s Commissioner for Wales, Heléna Herklots CBE, said:

“Rather than providing certainty and assurance, the statement from the new Chancellor will have instead left many older people in Wales feeling greatly concerned about the energy bills they will face come April 2023, with energy costs for a typical household forecast to reach over £4300.

“Alongside this, the Chancellor’s failure to commit to maintaining the Pensions Triple Lock and uprating the State Pension in line with inflation means that many older people will be worried that they will see a further real terms cut to their incomes, creating further financial pressures, as well as significant stress and anxiety.

“We know that older people are already cutting back on essentials in an effort to save money, which will result in more ill-health due to cold, damp housing and/or poor nutrition and sadly, in some cases, will lead to deaths that could have been prevented.

“Many older people will also be concerned about the impact that cuts in spending will have on the public services they need and often rely on, which are already facing huge pressures.

“The UK Government must carefully consider its priorities and deliver the support that older people need, not just this winter, but also in the longer term. That’s why it’s crucial that they immediately commit to the Pensions Triple Lock, and urgently review and permanently upgrade the Winter Fuel Payment, recognising the decrease in its real terms value since it was last set.

“Longer-term, the UK Government must also undertake a comprehensive review of the State Pension – currently amongst the lowest in Europe – and other entitlement and support to ensure that older people’s incomes are sufficient for a decent standard of living.”

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