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Action on Poverty hits back at Picardo’s pensions claim

The Action on Poverty campaign group has denied it has pressed the Gibraltar Government for £24,000 to be paid to every private sector pensioner yearly, insisting it has been advocating a means-testing approach.

This follows a spat between the group and the caretaker Chief Minister Fabian Picardo over the Government’s approach to the issue of poverty in Gibraltar.

Mr Picardo had said that the group were asking him to pay every private sector pensioner a pension of at least £24,000.

“That is what they, in particular the Private Pensioners Association, want,” he said in a statement last week, adding that this was an “undeliverable and illegitimate claim”.

But in hitting back, the Private Sector Pensioners and Workers Association categorically denied this.

“This is not correct and misrepresents both our views and the discussions held which, as may be understood, involve complex issues, not simplistic equations for the public gallery,” the Association said.

“In fact, we have been at pains to explain to Government that a means-testing approach to pension justice would be a fair and acceptable method to rectifying where vulnerable individuals are in need of help.”

“Whilst Mr Picardo prefers to rubbish our statements as ‘nonsense’, we prefer to talk of his manifesto commitments, which cannot and will not be obfuscated or forgotten ‘meantime’.”