Farm spouses’ pensions proposal a chink of light in dark times for rural Ireland – McFadden
PRESS RELEASE -
Just ½ million needed to reinstate pensions while Anglo gets €40 billion
Fine Gael Longford/ Westmeath Senator, Nicky McFadden, has said the backing received by an Oireachtas Committee in relation to the protection of the pensions of farm spouses is a welcome reprieve during these dark days of assault by the Government on rural Ireland.
“The decision taken yesterday by the Social & Family Affairs Committee to back a proposal, set down by Fine Gael’s Olwyn Enright, calling for Minister O’Cuív to reverse the Government’s attack on farm spouse pensions is to be welcomed amidst the raft of unprecedented attacks on farming families of late.
“Recognising the difficulties faced by farmers, the Committee, moved to have the contributory old age pension for farm spouses reinstated, following the callous decision by Government to remove it. The restoration of these pensions would cost just €570,000, a mere pittance when consideration is given to the fact that €40 billion has been given over to nurse Anglo Irish Bank along with no systemic importance to the Irish banking system and no credit benefits for the ordinary citizen.
“It’s no secret that farm families have been hammered hard by this Fianna Fáil Government. They have seen their incomes plummet and much needed schemes revoked, pressing them to the pin of their collars.
“The REPS scheme has been cancelled only to be replaced by an inferior agri-environment scheme which will force farmers to do more for less in return. The Young Farmers’ Installation Aid Scheme and Early Retirement Scheme have also been abolished while the Suckler Cow Welfare Scheme, Disadvantaged Areas Scheme and Forestry Premia have all been slashed.
“Rural Ireland is slowly being eroded with post offices being shut down, the constant threatened closure of rural Garda stations, hospitals and schools and a lack of provision for rural transport. I am calling on the Government to do the right thing, to reinstate the farm spouses’ pension and to cease these vicious and unjustified attacks on the hundreds of farming families across the country.”
This entry was posted on Monday, April 12th, 2010 at 11:57 pm
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