Pension stampede possible

A decision by a European court pushing up the retirement age for women to the same number of years applicable for men may lead to a rush of female civil servants seeking early retirement, putting massive pressure on state social security funds. The court decison may result in 50 percent of the country’s female civil servants opting for an early pension at a time where their social security fund is unable to make lump sum payments to some 15,000 members due to financial difficulties, according to sources. Public sector workers’ union ADEDY said this will not only put a huge strain on the funds but will also create massive problems in the operation of the public sector. A decision from the Greek government in response to the court ruling is expected soon, officials said yesterday. Out of Greece’s 235,945 female civil servants, 125,544 have been employed for more than 20 years while 106,825 are above the age of 50.

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