Over-sixties angry about increased pension age
The over-sixties are finding it difficult to cope with having to work longer until they receive their state pension, according to research by the Dutch demographic institute NIDI.
The research shows that 7 out of 10 older employees have at least one long-term illness or a handicap which hinders them in their work.
Most of the less well educated questioned said their work is physically heavy, while the better educated said their work was stressful. Many of them are angry at the raising of the pensionable age, broadcaster Nos reports.
The decision to raise the pension age in phases to 67 years was taken in 2012 and has a major effect on those born in or after 1950, Nos says. The state pension age is currently 65 years and 5 months.
NIDI researcher Kène Henkens told the broadcaster that the difference with ‘the old days’ is great. ‘For decennia it was usual to take your pension at around 60 years of age. That makes the step to 65 or 67 enormous, especially for people who started working at a young age. They experience it as completely unfair.’
Most of the anger about the new arrangement comes from the less well educated who have often been working since they were 15 years old, according to Henkens. That anger means they work as few hours as possible, will not go on courses and do not invest in the social side of working. ‘It undermines their motivation,’ says Henkens.
One respondent, a teacher, is quoted as saying: ‘You work for 40 years thinking you can stop when you reach 62 and then four years is added “just like that”. That is frustrating, and it is not good for young children to have grandma and grandpa standing in front of the class.’
One solution could be part-time pensions, the Nos reports. Most of the respondents to the NIDI research stop work when at an average age of 63.4 years, but that is expensive for them. Each year earlier they stop working means a reduction of around 8% on their pension. With a part-time pension they would work fewer hours for a small amount of their pension.
This is already possible with many pensions but the employer has to give permission.
Pensioner lobby group ANBO, however, questions the NIDI findings. ‘Our research shows that many older people enjoy working,’ a spokesman told Nos. The ANBO says 40% of people who reach pensionable age are interested in working part-time for part of their pension. ‘What is important is that people can stop earlier. That choice is very important,’ the spokesman said.