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OAS changes will lead to more poverty, NDP claims

By: Sudbury Northern Life Staff

 | Apr 29, 2012 - 9:06 AM |
A new report by the NDP shows that raising the age of eligibility for Old Age Security and Guaranteed Income Supplement from 65 to 67 will lead more seniors into poverty, according to a news release.

That’s why NDP pensions critic Irene Mathyssen tabled a motion April 26 calling on the House to reject the Conservative plan to raise the age of eligibility to 67.

“Up to 95,000 recent retirees would fall into poverty today without OAS and GIS. The poverty rate of these seniors would increase from six to 25 per cent,” Mathyssen said.

OAS and GIS represent half the income of nearly 30 per cent of seniors. The number increases to 38 per cent for women, according to the report.

“A caring society must take care of our seniors,” Nickel Belt MP Claude Gravelle said. “The Conservatives are using a temporary increase in OAS-GIS costs as an excuse for permanently cutting back a remarkably effective and affordable social program.”

“Women will be most severely affected by these changes that the Conservatives want to make. They are forgetting that, for some seniors, these programs are their only source of income. The Conservatives are turning their back on seniors to finance their misguided priorities,” seniors critic Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe said.

The NDP said in the press release it will fight to force Conservatives to reverse their decision to cut OAS and GIS. Many experts, including the Parliamentary Budget Officer, confirmed that the program is sustainable in the long-term.

Posted by Heidi Ulrichsen

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