Monday, November 18, 2013

After a lifetime of work

British pensioners complain that many immigrants to the country receive more in benefits than they do. Whilst pensioners have to accept the amount they are given, it seems that many immigrants know how to play the system to their advantage. Still, in spite of their complaints, most pensioners in Britain live reasonably well.

That is not the case here in Spain. A report today in one of the local papers says that, one in four pensioners in Alicante province, lives below the poverty line.

Whilst they might have dreamt of the things they might do in retirement like go for day trips or taking holidays, the truth is that many pensioners can barely afford to live. Instead of enjoying a little leisure, they find themselves having to go to the markets when they are about to close to pick up the food that gets thrown away.

At one time the families of these retirees would support them, now it is the other way round. During the financial crisis, cash strapped families are looking more an more to their parents and even grandparents for support.

Cuts in social services and the health service have not helped one bit. The system of copayment for medicines is a real burden for many and an expensive trip to the dentist every six months is definitely out of the question.  

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