Older people will continue to receive Universal Benefits
- 04 Feb
Despite rumours that universal benefits for older people would be removed, the government have confirmed people of pensionable age will continue to receive universal benefits.
Benefits like the winter fuel allowance have been suggested to become means-tested, which would go against the Conservatives pledge not to remove benefits from older people.
Their promise to keep these benefits as universal has now been extended by almost a year to April 2016.
The policy to give all pensioners a winter fuel allowance, free TV licences and bus passes and other benefits was included in the Coalition Agreement in 2010 after being part of the Conservative party's general election campaign.
The Conservatives have had pressure from both sides of the Coalition to limit who receives these benefits amid all the cuts to other benefits.
The Prime Ministers spokesman has now said:
As regards pensioner benefits, the prime minister has very clearly set out his promises on this. He stands fully behind them.
Pensioner benefits are fully protected for the entirety of this Parliament - including for the year 2015-16.
As part of the £10bn cuts to the welfare system, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has indicated that wealthier people can afford to 'sacrifice' some benefits before those less well off are hit and many others, such as Lib Dem's Paul Burstow, have said that the money should be saved from this area and put towards care.
However, the government has been adamant from the beginning that these benefits would be protected until the next general election in May 2015 and now it has revealed that they will remain in place for almost a year past that date.
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