BBC Radio 5 Live, in a rare break from its coverage of the Westminster tragedy yesterday, invited Iona to come into the Drive studio just before the 6pm news and comment on the Cridland report on the state pension, and how it will affect millennials.
Q: How will young people like you view the central recommendation that the pension age should rise to 68, and seven years earlier than previously proposed?
Iona: I’m young healthy and enjoying my work and that will be the case for so many millennials so the government will probably get away with this. Delaying your state pension by a few years doesn’t seem such a big deal. But as we get older we will start to wonder whether we get to that point, can we work into our 60s, especially people in particularly demanding jobs like medicine or construction. There is no flexibility in the new state pension proposals to allow people with shorter than expected (working) lives to be able to draw their pension early.
Q. Should people make their own provision?
Iona: We have got absolutely no choice to be honest. The onus is on us to save as much as we can for our retirement, as it is clear that the state pension is never going to be at a level that will support a decent retirement. We do now have auto-enrolment, but it is not generous enough, the minimum contribution level is low and you will have to supplement that with a private pension, or perhaps by taking out the new lifetime Isa.
Coverage of the issue was truncated due to the news agenda, and Iona hopes to be able to discuss it again in more detail in a future broadcast.
To listen to Iona, fast forward to around 1 hour, 56 minutes in;
Here is a quick summary of the reason why the issue was being discussed;