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Aug 13, 2019

Will G.O.B. Take on Non-Contributory Pensions?

Now the increased contribution is not sitting well with many workers. Doctor Colin Young says that they ought not to look at social security as taxes such as GST and income tax because the payment benefits the contributor at various instances in their lifespan, including sickness and maternity benefits, as well as retirement pension. But what about the non-contributory persons for which the S.S.B. has paid over fifty million dollars in pension monies to them? Doctor Young says that the Board has reviewed the concerns and a proposal will be tabled for the government to make those payments.

 

Dr. Colin Young, C.E.O., S.S.B.

Dr. Colin Young

“The non-contributory pension, which is paid to men who are over age sixty-seven who have not worked and women who are over sixty-five, essentially you have to be really poor and nobody to take care of you, they are paid a hundred dollars a month. Since the inception of the non-contributory programme, we’ve spent over fifty million dollars to fund that programme. And so as a result of that, contributors are often very annoyed and upset because they are saying that it is our contributors’ money that is used to fund the non-contributory pension. And so as part of the reforms, one of the promises we made is that we will make a proposal to the government of Belize to take over the non-contributory pension because somebody has to look after the most vulnerable in our society. And the S.S.B. Belize is not the only social security system that has a non-contributory programme, but because of the increase, people rightfully believe that it is not something that should be paid from social security. And so that’s why you would hear a lot of the sentiments you do because people are saying well if we had all of that money in the fund, then perhaps we would not need to have increase when we did.”

 

That fifty million dollars was paid over the period 2003 to 2019.


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