A special statutory retirement age for manual workers would create a new pension gap in Britain, experts warn.
The current state pension age is set at 66 and it is on the way to 67. For many, it is the earliest age at which they can retire.
However, manual workers with deteriorating physical health are often unable to work at this age.
An “early settlement” could allow these workers to receive their state pension age younger, at a reduced rate, based on proposals set out in an independent state pension age report released this week.
It would mean professionals and office workers have to wait relatively longer for their state pension.
The report, led by Baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe, said: “These may include individuals aged, for example, 65 and over and with 45 years of national insurance contributions or equivalent and should be aimed at helping those who have been physically demanding for many years fulfilled functions. .”
A special retirement age would also benefit those who go straight to work after school, the report found.
In the current system, people in wealthier areas receive more AOW benefits during their lifetime, thanks to a higher life expectancy. However, a tiered system could reverse the inequality, creating a new imbalance between the people of the north and south, experts warn.
This is because people in Scotland, Wales and the north of England tend to live shorter lives, with a higher share of jobs in manual labour. The professional services companies, on the other hand, are concentrated in London and the South East.