NI Conservatives’ chairman, Irwin Armstrong, has congratulated the Assembly on being “practical and realistic” enough to endorse the changes to retirement age.
“Nobody likes telling people that they will have work longer”, Irwin commented. “But, with aging populations and the increase in life expectancy, governments all across Europe have had to take responsibility for this unpopular decision. Clearly it would be completely unrealistic to expect Northern Ireland to be an exception.”
“Responsible government sometimes involves having to implement unpopular measures and make difficult decisions. On this occasion the majority in the Assembly has engaged in some grown-up politics.”
“It’s a pity that the SDLP has been the exception, after it decided to take a populist and irresponsible line, by opposing the pensions bill. It has chosen not to address the problems facing every government across Europe, but rather to play to the political gallery.”
“The changes may not be pleasant to implement, but they are necessary in order to have sustainable pensions for a modern age.”