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Should Pension Systems Recognise "Hazardous and Arduous Work"?

Listed author(s):
  • Asghar Zaidi


  • Edward R. Whitehouse


Special pensions for workers in hazardous or arduous jobs have long been a feature of the pension landscape and, recently, they are the subject of a great deal of debate in the pension arenas of many OECD countries. Such pensions are historically rooted in the idea that people who work in hazardous or arduous jobs – say, underground mining – merit special treatment. The rationale for this scheme is that hazardous or arduous work increases mortality and reduces life expectancy, thus reducing the time during which retirement benefits can be enjoyed. This results in such workers being made eligible for earlier access to pension benefits than otherwise available in that country’s general pension scheme... Les régimes de retraite spéciaux pour les professions dangereuses ou pénibles existent de longue date. Depuis quelques temps, ils suscitent de multiples débats dans de nombreux pays de l’OCDE. Ces régimes ont pour origine l’idée selon laquelle les personnes qui exercent un métier dangereux ou pénible, l’exploitation minière souterraine par exemple, méritent un traitement particulier. Cette idée se justifie par le fait que ces métiers augmentent la mortalité et diminuent l’espérance de vie, réduisant ainsi la période pendant laquelle les personnes qui les exercent peuvent profiter de leurs prestations de retraite. C’est pourquoi elles ont le droit de partir à la retraite avant l’échéance fixée par le régime de retraite général national...

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Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers with number 91.

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Date of creation: 10 Aug 2009
Handle: RePEc:oec:elsaab:91-en
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