Simon Read: 'Ros Altmann must put pensions before politics'

Altmann this week she made her maiden speech in the House of Lords

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The Independent Online

I have been keeping an eye on our new pensions minister Ros Altmann on behalf of readers who are hoping that she keeps her pre-power pledges to help eradicate some of the unfairness that remains in the world of pensions.

Is she likely to deliver? This week she made her maiden speech in the House of Lords. She told the chamber: "In the past 15 years or so, I have worked really hard to help ordinary pension savers. I have been involved in a number of campaigns trying to achieve justice for those who have lost out in our pension system, and it has been a privilege to have been able to make a difference to so many people's lives. That is what motivates me. I earnestly hope that, in my new role, I will be able to help many more – time will tell."

Time certainly will tell and we know that it's not always easy to put right years or decades of unfairness, so we'll be patient with Dr Altmann as she finds her feet. She acknowledged some of the challenges she faces but said: "I will try to consider long-term trends as well as short-term imperatives when formulating policy. Pensions will outlast most politicians. They can help form the cornerstone of a prosperous society."

Pensions will indeed outlast politicians, which is why I'm still hopeful she will put people's needs above politics to ensure a fairer pension outcome for us all.

s.read@independent.co.uk

Twitter: @simonnread

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