Will women get a fairer state pension deal?

Published on February 4, 2016 by Andrew

A current Saga report claims the battle to provide women a fairer state pensions won an important victory at the beginning of January, when it was a main topic in the House of Commons. While the debate did not have capacity to directly adjust government policy, it symbolised another important step in delivering the campaign to the public eye and obtaining support from political figures.

A campaign party called WASPI (Women Against State Pension Inequality) has long been battling to get justice for a huge number of women who will be experiencing delays in obtaining their government pensions, stating that women born during the 1950s – particularly those born after06/04/51- have experienced 2 increases to their state retirement age, that until 2010 had stayed at 60 for a number of decades. WASPI claims that a lot of the women impacted by the 1995 and 2011 retirement law alterations face an unjust double delay to become entitled to their pensions.

WASPI’s campaign is based upon the contention that successive governments haven’t done enough to tell those affected of the delays, and also the 2011 reforms were executed too soon. It has led to a lot of women being given inadequate time for them to plan their finances for retirement, according to the group.

During the debate, the House of Commons members expressed concern that this acceleration of pension age equalisation specifically discriminated women, negatively affected pension plans and induced “undue hardship” in some circumstances, with a number of women experiencing difficulty due to lower pay and professions interrupted by raising children. Within the Government benches it was however claimed that currently there are “no intentions to change state pension age arrangements” for women impacted by the equalisation of qualification ages and without having change, our present state pension plans won’t be sustainable. It was actually suggested that financial hardship was preventable as everyone was given notice regarding the change, and they had sufficient time to plan.

The controversy will probably put pressure on the government to react in greater detail to WASPI’s demands for fairer transitional measures.

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