Weathering the recession

 

Sir, – The figures from the Central Statistics Office on the resilience of those over 55 to the effects of the recession need to be looked at carefully (Home News, February 15th).

By including those aged between 55 and 64, I believe the figures give a false impression of how older people – those aged over 65 – are coping with the recession. First, many, if not most of those aged between 55 and 65 are still in the workplace and many, if not most will be enjoying the benefits of service increments and will be at the top end of the salary or pay scales. Second, many will have their mortgage paid and will have put their children through education and so will have disposable income to enjoy and to cushion them against the recession.

On the other hand, most people over the age of 65 are dependent on a State pension for their income. In fact 68 per cent of those over 65 depend on a State pension. These people do not have the cushion of disposable income to protect them against the recession.

I would be very interested to see the CSO do the same analysis on those aged 65 and over to see how they are surviving the recession. – Yours, etc,

GERARD SCULLY,

Senior Information Officer,

Age Action Ireland Ltd,

Lower Camden Street,

Dublin 2.