State pension fury as Brits fear new triple lock betrayal – ‘Sunak sees us as soft target’

State pension rise is 'woefully insufficient' says expert

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Express.co.uk readers say that Sunak has already scrapped the State Pension uplift mechanism for this year and there is nothing to stop him from doing it again. It’s a case of once bitten, twice shy.

Under the triple lock, the State Pension increases either by earnings, inflation or 2.5 percent, whichever is higher.

This April, pensioners should have received a pay rise of more than 8 percent, in line with earnings growth.

However, Sunak blocked that increase, after the DWP said earnings figures had been “skewed and distorted” by the pandemic.

Instead, pensioners got just 3.1 percent. That’s a cut in real terms as inflation hit a 40-year high of nine percent in the year to April.

Sunak’s intervention sparked fury among hard-pressed pensioners and many fear a repeat this year.

The government uses the September inflation figure for the triple lock. By then, consumer price growth could be in double digits. 

That could give pensioners a bumper pay rise, costing the Treasury a fortune. 

The new State Pension is currently worth a maximum £9,627.80 a year. If inflation does hit 10 percent in September, it could rise by almost £1,000 next April to around £10,600 a year.

Those who retired before April 6, 2016 on the old basic State Pension currently get a maximum of £7,376.20 a year. They would get a smaller rise of £737.62, lifting their pension to £8,113.82.

In March, Sunak confirmed to the Treasury Committee that the State Pension triple-lock guarantee is to return from April 2023.

Yet Express.co.uk readers refuse to believe this will happen until they see it.

Reader Tam60 said suspending the triple lock this year meant breaking a Conservative Party manifesto promise, but it still happened. “Surely no one is gullible enough to believe it will ever be reinstated.”

Reader Golden Gem was equally sceptical: “Are you seriously expecting to see the triple lock brought back next year? I doubt we will see it again for some years to come.”

Another reader Adamandeveit was equally adamant: “A £1,000 increase in the State Pension will never happen under Rishi [Sunak].”

Many readers believe Sunak should revisit his decision to suspend the triple lock THIS year in view of the current cost of living crisis, and apply the full amount.

Reader Jimmy wrote to say that: “The Chancellor should review the current payment with a view to restoring the 2022/23 increase.”

Jimmy also questioned whether Sunak would apply the triple lock in 2023, warning that the Government sees state pensioners as a “soft target”.

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Another reader, skipper, pointed out that suspending the triple lock for just one year will affect pensioners for the rest of their lives. “Given the way percentages work, the failure to keep up with costs this year is replicated in all following years in a reduced amount of pension.”

Skipper also reflected the views of many readers who retired on the old basic State Pension, which pays less than the new one. “While we are about it, [Sunak should] move all those on the mean old State Pension to the slightly less stingy new one.”

Reader UrsulaHainsworth agreed: “It’s not fair that those who retired before 2016 are to get less. We still have the same outgoings, we face the same energy increases and the same food crisis as those who retired after 2016.”

Many said they would never vote for the Conservative party again unless Sunak plays fair by the triple lock.

Reader HJD said: “If they don’t reinstate it, they will lose the General Election, no doubt about that!”

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