The independent London newspaper

Why should wealthier pensioners have their TV licence fee paid?

20 June, 2019

• I AM inclined to mixed feelings about the end of free television licences for all over-75s. Quite apart from the fact it is the Conservative administration which has passed this on to the BBC, I see no iniquity in the decision.

Much spleen has been vented, erroneously I think, at the repercussions for elderly isolated pensioners, such as myself, relying on the box for companionship.

The corporation will continue to grant exemption to all those in receipt of pension credit, so that section of the population are unaffected. Why should the wealthier pensioners, with successful careers behind them, be subsidised in this way?

As well as contributing they have also taken out and rewarded themselves, and this category are not lonely and isolated. Spend the money either on social welfare or extension of services in media programmes.

While it is often argued that a substantial bulk of the pensioner population are too proud to claim this benefit under social security legislation, they must exercise their entitlement to this perk as do all other welfare claimants.

The government might also simplify legislation to render it more easily comprehensible for those who may experience confusion. And from my own experience these benefits are applied automatically upon reaching the qualifying age.

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