Pensioners protest across Spain demanding payout hike
MADRID – Thousands of elderly Spaniards are rallying in protests across the country to ask for an increase in public pension payouts for retirees.
Unions and retiree groups called for protests in over 100 cities and towns across Spain on Saturday to demand that pension payouts rise in line with inflation. Many pensioners complain that the government’s 0.25 percent increase in 2017 is insufficient.
Protestors braved rain and cold weather in Madrid to march behind a banner saying “Protect Pensions in the Constitution.”
Experts have warned about the future of the pension system in an aging Spain, with fewer workers contributing to the national pension fund as the number of retirees rises.
The government says 139 billion euros, or 29 percent of total public spending, was paid last year in state pensions.