Pension Credit failure revealed as Jo Swinson visits East Dunbartonshire Care Homes

Jo has campaigned locally against the complex Pension Credit system

Jo highlighted a worrying trend in the number of East Dunbartonshire pensioners claiming Pension Credit, as she visited care homes in Bishopbriggs and Bearsden this week.

Figures obtained by Jo reveal that take-up of the means-tested benefit has remained static in 2006, having registered only a small increase in the previous year.

Commenting on the figures, Jo said:

“Pension Credit take-up rates have declined year-on-year to the point where they have now ground to a halt. With an estimated one-third of pensioners entitled to Pension Credit not claiming it, the failings of a overly-complex policy based too heavily on means-testing are being exposed.

“Without substantial reform, pensions policy will continue to let down pensioners in East Dunbartonshire.”

On Tuesday Jo was a guest at Mavis Bank care home in Bishopbriggs and on Wednesday she visited ‘sister’ homes Buchanan House and Buchanan Lodge in Bearsden. Jo addressed concerns raised with her by staff and residents, and after the visits she said:

“Both residents and staff in care homes are under a unique set of pressures and it was useful on these visits to be able to listen to their concerns first-hand. Visiting care homes across East Dunbartonshire over the coming weeks will help me build up a detailed and informative picture of care home services in the constituency.”

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