By Kate Hughes
Pensioners are planning an all-night protest outside Downing Street to highlight what they say are Government double standards over financial aid for victims of the company pensions scandal.
The Pensions Action Group, which will stage the vigil tonight, has accused the Government of treating them unjustly, by immediately offering protection to customers of Northern Rock, while neglecting the 125,000 who lost their pensions when their companies went bust, and who have been fighting for proper compensation for more than four years.
The latest protest takes place ahead of publication of the Young Review, set up in April this year, to examine whether an alternative treatment of the residual funds in affected pension schemes could supplement the committed government funding of the Financial Assistance Scheme (FAS), established in 2004 to help those affected. The FAS currently pays out up to 80 per cent of lost pensions up to a maximum of 12,000 a year. The review is considering increasing payments to 90 per cent up to a limit of around 25,000.
"The victims are holding this vigil to warn the Prime Minister not to try to get away with any more spin and deceit over this issue," said Ros Altmann, advocate for the group.
"The nation needs to know that the scandal is still dragging on, month after month, as more of the victims fall ill or die. …