Campaigners want winter fuel allowance for all ex-pat pensioners

Campaigners have urged the government to provide winter fuel allowance for all ex-pat pensioners.

The government has stated that it will cut the benefit, worth £200-£300 per year, for all ex-pat pensioners living in a country which has higher winter temperatures than Britain, by 2015. However, lobbyists claim this is unfair and have started an online petition against the decision on a government website.

This petition needs 100,000 signatures for the matter to be debated by MPs, however, it has currently only been signed by 15,000.

Talking about the petition, its organiser, Sarah Smith, told iexpats.com: "I am urging the government to allow expats their own members of parliament. France has already done this with 11 MPs and a minister representing 2 million French expats."

She continued: "This move would allow British expats to vote for their own MP to look after their interests, like the state pension and rights to claim benefits."

The rule change will mean around 200,000 pensioners will miss out on the payment. This includes those living in some of the most popular ex-pat destinations such as Portugal, France, Spain, Greece and Gibraltar.

Meanwhile it was also reported by ripleyandheanornews.co.uk this week that many UK residents are under such financial pressure that they are having to choose between heating their home or eating over the winter months.

It was claimed that the rise in the cost of heating bills has lead to "excess winter deaths" in some boroughs of Britain over the last year.

Posted on Monday, December 30, 2013

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