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Decent pensions for all

Recommendation 2000 (2012)

Parliamentary Assembly
Assembly debate on 27 April 2012 (18th Sitting) (see Doc. 12896, report of the Committee on Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development, rapporteur: Mr Jacquat). Text adopted by the Assembly on 27 April 2012 (18th Sitting).
1. In an economic, demographic and social context that has put a huge strain on European pension systems, requiring far-reaching reforms to ensure their sustainability, the Parliamentary Assembly is concerned about the issue of pension adequacy, namely the safeguarding of adequate pensions for all pensioners. The trends towards smaller pensions and the increased use of funded schemes are creating new intra- and intergenerational inequality and therefore pose a threat to social cohesion in many member States.
2. Referring to Resolution 1882 (2012) on decent pensions for all, and Resolution 1752 (2010) on decent pensions for women, the Parliamentary Assembly calls on the Committee of Ministers to urge member States to:
2.1 ratify the revised European Social Charter (ETS No. 163), which is the only binding Council of Europe instrument that refers to the right of the elderly to “adequate resources enabling them to lead a decent life”;
2.2 make it a political priority to review and, if necessary, revise their pension systems;
2.3 take, particularly in the light of the current economic and financial crises, resolute measures not only to ensure the sustainability of pension systems but also to guarantee adequate pensions for all, having regard to the specific situation of groups requiring special protection;
2.4 provide clear information that everyone can understand on the options available within national pension systems, which are often complex, to enable everyone to take their own measures to provide for themselves according to their means.
3. The Assembly invites the Committee of Ministers to study the issues of pensions and the standard of living of the elderly in the context of the intergovernmental activities conducted by the Drafting Group on the Human Rights of the Elderly (CDDH-AGE), with a view to exchanging good practices in this area and preparing practical instruments, such as guidelines, which can help direct member States in their ongoing or forthcoming reforms. Active debate on this subject in the Council of Europe could also represent a significant contribution in the context of the European Year of Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations 2012, initiated by the European Commission.