Reforms of the state pension which begin on April 6th 2016 have today (30th December 2015) been branded ‘unfair’ by the Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, Tom Blenkinsop, as petition to ‘make fair transitional state pension arrangements for 1950’s women’ approaches 100k signatures.
“The equalisation of the state pension age is a step that has been broadly welcomed. But the fact is these changes – which have been branded as a mistake by the former Lib Dem minister in charge of implementing them – quite clearly unfairly impact on hundreds of thousands of women born in the 1950’s. I have consistently voted and campaigned against these quite clearly, unfair proposals.
“The first increase in women’s state pension age was introduced by the Pensions Act 1995 and there was little mention of this at the time but it represented a significant change. The lack of awareness has been demonstrated in a series of FOI requests which show that the DWP didn’t even write a letter about the change to any woman affected for nearly 14 years after the Act was passed.
“The government’s proposals will hurt thousands of hard-working women who believed their retirement was just around the corner. Many of these are women who have juggled working lives with raising a family, and who have very little retirement saving to fall back on. The lack of warning of these changes means they do not have enough time to adjust carefully thought-out retirement plans and leaves them feeling robbed of their pensions.
“The Government needs a fairer and longer transition period – it shouldn’t happen in such a way that penalises so many people.”