Raising pension age could affect panel beaters: Budget 2014

Mike Gallagher and Andrew are employed at MGM Panelbeaters and discussed the rising pension age.

Mike Gallagher and Andrew are employed at MGM Panelbeaters and discussed the rising pension age.

THE 2014 Budget will continue to raise the pension age from 67 by July 1 2023 to 70 by July 1 2035.  

Two employees of MGM Panelbeaters in Bega talked about the issue with the BDN, on a personal and professional level. 

Mike Gallagher has worked as a painter at MGM for 12 years, and can retire in a month. 

“I’m not looking forward to it – I want to keep going,” he said.

He will continue to work at MGM, and while he personally doesn’t want to stop he said not being able to get the pension until 70 would be hard for some who work in the industry. 

“It does make it tough on some people who really can’t do it,” he said.  

“It’s pretty labour intensive, so it would be pretty hard for some people. 

 “The politicians are a little out of touch in a way – I think they need to listen a bit more to the people. 

“But the way I see it, as long as you keep fit and your boss is happy, why not keep going?”

Andrew has worked as a panel beater at MGM for five years, and has been in the industry for 22. 

“From my point of view, employers don’t want to have people of that age working, it’s not feasible for them,” Andrew said.   

“All old age stuff catches up with you around then, so the bosses can’t get the best out of you and it will be less likely for you to be employed. 

“By the time you are 65 you have a lot of health issues, and being told to put up with them a bit longer is a bit unfair.”

He said while raising the pension age would not affect the industry overly, it would hold up new youths starting work for panel beaters because there would not be vacant places for them to fill. 

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