Are equal shares always fair?

The Sun’s got universal benefits for OAPs in its sights.  Today it launched a campaign called ‘Ditch Handouts to the Rich’.

The campaign targets £2 billion of benefits paid to all OAPs, regardless of their wealth.  To illustrate what it regards as the unfairness of universal payments, the paper highlights the “100,000 households with a retirement income of more than £100,000 a year” who receive Winter Fuel Payments.

Introducing means tests for OAPs would be a controversial move.  Arguably, pensioners have spent their lives contributing to the benefits system via their taxes.  By receiving benefits they are just getting back what they have put in. But means tests could also mean that money could be targeted at people in the most need.

We believe these are the kinds of questions that will be raised by the National Conversation when it goes live later this year.  In the mean time, we’re keen to find out what you think: are equal shares always fair?


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