§ 12. Mr. Greville Janner
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will seek power to introduce phased retirement for men.
§ Mr. Janner
Is my right hon. Friend agreed that in principle there can be no justification for different retirement ages for men and women? Is he agreed in principal on retirement equality for men?
§ Mr. Orme
My hon. and learned Friend asks me about principle. Obviously the Government would want to work towards equalisation, but that will take time. This is a matter of costings. My hon. and learned Friend will have seen the sort of public expenditure that 1096 would be needed to bring about an equal pension retirement age in the paper that we produced.
§ Mr. Gwilym Roberts
In the present situation, in which we are faced with long-term structural unemployment, does my right hon. Friend agree that the odds are very heavy that the job of every man who is put on pension will be taken up by someone on the unemployment register and that the net costing of such an operation would be little or nothing? If there is the long-term phasing in of a lower retirement age, and, having looked at the booklet in some detail—
§ Mr. Marten
In the meantime, can we not make a start by offering the option of a retirement pension to those over 60 who are made redundant?