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Waspi urges DWP mass-mailing to fuel Ombudsman complaints

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The Women Against State Pension Inequality group is organising a mass-mailing to the Department for Work and Pensions in the hope it will lead to formal complaints to the Parliamentary Ombudsman.

The group, which wants transitional measures for women who have seen their state pension age increase, provide an email template and detail how to escalate the complaint.

The complaint centres on the lack of adequate notice given to women born in the 1950s. The letter says the DWP is “guilty of maladministration in the way the changes have been introduced”.

A posting on the Waspi website says: “We want to cause such a high volume that it will further compel the Government to look in earnest at making remedy for the ‘grotesque disadvantage’ and financial loss we have suffered.”

Last week former Pensions Minister Ros Altmann said in a letter to Prime Minister Theresa May that the government had not “adequately addressed” the Waspi issue.

She wrote: “They were not adequately informed. I also believe we must devote resource to widely communicating and publicising the coming changes to state pension age for both men and women.”

According to Waspi, the group is planning to launch a national publicity campaign in the coming weeks.

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Comments

There are 7 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Surely they should be called “Women Against State Pension Equality group” rather than “Inequality”?

  2. Why would they be ‘against equality’ surely they want equality and are ‘against inequality’

  3. Matt & Simon
    You just don’t get it do you guys.
    Initially these women had been planning to retire at the then state pension age of 60. Are you keeping up with me? They then are told that if they are born between 1950 and 1955 they will retire on a sliding scale i.e. born in 1954 retire at age 64. Are you still keeping up boys?
    They are then told that they will receive state pension at age 66. Therefore having gone from age 60 to age 66 in a short number of years is definitely out of order. Ok Lads 🙂

  4. Hugh – I am well aware of the situation and do not need your patronising explanation – I was mearly correcting the above statement – You keeping up with me? Let me know if you need it laid out more clearly.

  5. I am very surprised that so many people seem to think that the world of work that they entered in the 1960s and 1970s would have the same terms decades later. Over these decades we have seen tax and NI rates continually change, the graduated pension was replaced by SERPs, SERPS changed its way of accruing entitlement as it was deemed too generous and was then replaced by S2P, also now abolished. Capital transfer tax was replaced by inheritance tax, mortgage interest relief was abolished, age allowance was abolished in favour of higher personal tax thresholds for all and countless other alterations to the system. The only certain thing is change.
    The big mistake in all of this was to wait so long before introducing the changes. Had the 1995 Pensions Act begun to be implemented in 2005, giving 10 years’ notice to those due to reach 60 in 2005 (born in 1945), there could’ve been a far more gradual increase to women’s SPA, and there wouldn’t be such steep rises condensed into a shorter number of years. However, we cannot turn back the clock.

  6. WASPI women aren’t against equalisation of pension ages. There are a few issues but the biggest is that the DWP did not write to the women most severely affected (those born in the 1950’s) until 14 to 17 years after the 1995 changes, or not at all. Eg I, along with thousands of other women born in the mid-’50s, understood that I was still getting State Pension at age 60, until I was sent a DWP letter just 3 years before age 60 (late 2012) informing me of both the 1995 and 2011 Act changes to my Pension ages, and that my State Pension was being deferred 6 years. So just 3 years’ notice if a loss of over £30,000 income. A man my age may have had the same too-short notice but he has to find just 1 year’s income. The staging of the changes for women has also been unfair. Eg someone 2 years older than me got State Pension at 62. The private pensions and wider financial services industry has also let down we 1950s-born women customers by not advising us of the changes between 1995 and now, and advising us how to make up thousands of pounds lost income.

  7. Don’t understand why the Government can make a U turn on the proposed changes to NI rates for the self employed in such a short time, which would cost the self employed a few hundred pounds a year, whilst treating the WASPI campaign as if they are invisable. I am 61 and have been self employed for nearly 30 years. I guess when the pensions regulations started to change I didn’t notice as I was juggling 3 children, work and home responsibilities. On top of our endowment fund being stripped out and coming in at 50k under its face value, I now realise that, because of the sharp hike in SRA from 60 to 66 years, I am being deprived of 30K income that I was expecting as a result of 42 years of contributions. I think that it is fair to equalise pensions, but maybe female and male should have been brought together at, say, 63 years for a while, before slowly raising it together. Between my husband & I, 3 of our parents died in their 60’s so did not benefit from their pensions by very much. The unfairness of the current position is the severe uplift of 6 years, forcing women to work much longer than expected as they have not had the time or resources to fund a pension to allow them to retire earlier than before the state pension kicks in. If women retire then younger people could enter the employment ladder and the Government could save on benefits. But, in reality, a lot of women are going to die before they get their state pension, either because their post menopausal bodies get worn out or, as I have heard people say on BBC Radio 4, they may lose all hope and consider suicide, especially if they have had to give up paid employment to be an unpaid carer for their parents.

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