Revised All Party Pension Inequality Group for Women to act as bridge to get justice

The new Parliament has seen a complete revamp of the all party group tackling the long standing festering issue of pension inequality for millions of women caused by the mishandling of the rise in the women’s pension age.

Out go Carolyn Harris, the former chair and Labour MP for Swansea, East and co chair Tim Loughton, Conservative MP for East Worthing and Shoreham.

In come Andrew Gwynne, Labour MP for Denton and Reddish as the new chair and Peter Aldous, Conservative MP for Waveney as co chair.

The good news is that the change means a fresh start and a move to a more inclusive approach taking in the views of all the different women’s organisations that represent those born in the 1950s who were faced with a wait for up to six years to get their pension. Unfortunately under his predecessor Carolyn Harris this was not always the case and it was a never completely clear what this group of MPs wanted in compensation for the millions of women affected by the change.

Andrew Gwynne summed up the change succinctly.

“The APPG on State Pension Inequality exists to keep the issue of the 1950s women’s pension injustice alive.

“As new Chairs, Peter Aldous and I are informally taking evidence from all the 1950s women’s groups to get as much information as possible. We also await the Ombudsman’s report.[This is the report on maladministration]

“We recently had a good meeting with BackTo60 who are providing information to us about CEDAW and whether there is a parliamentary route on the issue.”

I gather that as well as Waspi and Waspi 2018 they have asked Joanne Welch, who ran BackTo60, to address a full meeting of the committee.

welcome news

This is particularly welcome news as for years we had a ridiculous position of a major court case seeking a judicial review of the government’s handling of the issue running alongside complaints to the Parliamentary Ombudsman – with the former being ignored by this committee. The first dealt with the past inequalities that were enshrined by the legislation, the second with whether the Department for Work and Pensions was guilty of maladministration in handling it.

The first ultimately failed but the fact that it took place at all is due to a ruling by Mrs Justice Lang – a remarkably independent woman judge – who decided that it couldn’t have possibly been known in 1995 that the new act would cause such present hardship to a group of women born in the 1950s. She incidentally took an equally controversial decision to save at the eleventh hour from destruction Brandon Station on the Suffolk/ Norfolk border designed by the architect who supervised the stone carvings in the Houses of Parliament. See my blog here.

The great news is that MPs will now look at all proposals from full restitution to compensation, take account of what the Parliamentary Ombudsman finally says, and be able to present their views to ministers who have been extremely reluctant to award any money at all to the 50s women.

CEDAW People’s Tribunal

They have also acknowledged the link to CEDAW – the UN Convention on the Elimination of all Discrimination Against Women, ratified by Margaret Thatcher in 1986.

With a CEDAW People’s Tribunal due to be held from June 21 in London with the backing of lawyers from Garden Court Chambers – it also very likely that the plight of the 50swomen will form part of wide ranging submissions covering violence to women, unequal pay and job discrimination.

The other members of the committee are: Philippa Whitford, SNP MP for Central Ayrshire; Liz Saville Roberts, Plaid Cymru MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd; Ruth Cadbury, Labour MP for Brentford and Isleworth; Jason McCartney, Conservative MP for Colne Valley; and Gavin Newlands ,SNP MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North.

52 thoughts on “Revised All Party Pension Inequality Group for Women to act as bridge to get justice

  1. At last all groups will be invited to have a say. I have every confidence this new group will seek justice in a fair & inclusive manner. It’s been a long time coming.

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    • Does this mean an end of waiting for money that I have had to without for so long as I am now 64. My husband who is 67 had to go back to work because our income remained the same but the bills kept going up.

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    • this is good news it brings a little light at the end of a very long tunnel if not a little too late for some of us. I am nearing the end of my 6 yrs sentence and will be getting my long awaited pension and bus pass soon. we will never get those 6 yrs back they are gone however theres no doubt that women’s pensions going from 60 to 66 has been handled badly and we should rightly be compensated but I am not going to build my hopes up just to get them shattered again..
      many thanks David once again for your valuable support and for keeping us all informed.

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      • I’ve heard recently that bus passes for those born in the 50’s have been withdrawn – worth investigating

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  2. Thank You so much David just when we think its game over you bring us the boost we need, this time it seems like we have a chance and lots of people fighting our corner. Like I have said before many of us 50s ladies have passed before receiving what was rightfully theirs, we owe it to them to fight till we do get it for those of us who are left and for the families of the ladies who have passed.

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  3. This is welcome news – I had to sell my house and move slightly further away from my family because of this pension injustice. I so hope we can be successful

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  4. Thank you so much. I and many other ladies in their 60s have had no choice but to work right through this pandemic, WHO advised that we were at greater risk of becoming seriously ill. I’m an exhausted support worker, I made it through but as they sent people with the virus back to care settings the outcome could have been very different. I need to bow out gracefully, It’s been a very hard time and enough is enough but I will need to get by on my savings for possibly 3 years.

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  5. Which ever way you look at it there was an injustice and it appears the penny has dropped. Hopefully women will be compensated at least for the injustice and turmoils they have had to endure.

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  6. This sounds promising. Iam 64 and still got two years before my state pension. Hopefully compensation will be the least we can expect. Hopefully a new team and fresh eyes and views will see the full extent of this injustice. Thankyou David Henke

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jackie I advise go online to the gov.uk website and check your personal pension forecast. There seems to be a sliding scale in when to receive your pension and double check you’ll get at 66 and not later.

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  7. My DOB: 30-12-1954
    I should have received my state pension in Dec 2014, at age 60!
    The change to 66 came, in Oct 2014 which meant I missed out collecting my pension at 60, by 3 months!
    I never received any prior notification and had to try and continue to work, although my physical ability to do so became increasingly difficult!
    In 2016 I was diagnosed with the following debilitating medical conditions:
    1. ankylosing spondylitis
    2. Fibrosis Mialga
    3. Diverticulitis
    4 Rheumatoid Arthritis
    This meant due to chronic pain and reduced mobility, I was forced to give up my job in service, as a cook housekeeper and because I was denied my state pension, resort to benefits!
    Along with my job was my house and certain utilities, which has meant extreme hardship!!!
    How can this be humanly possible!!
    Denise Walker

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  8. Thanks for giving us hope again!
    I’m 64 & a Carer for my partner who had to give up work when he got Cancer. The Chemo damaged his lungs so that he can no longer walk a short distance without Oxygen. As neither of us can work we have struggled to get by – I’ve been put in debt, have a bad credit score and we are living off a very small private pension payout that was supposed to be for my later years. Still got 2 years to go before I get my State Pension – if only I had received it when promised when I was 60!
    It’s an absolute disgrace the way we have been treated…….

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  9. For the last 6 years I have lived on my small private pension, I`m 67 now and all my pension and savings have gone. My SP is only 290 per month due to my accountant ex husband not paying my stamp ever, so I have applied for benefit for the first time in my life. To be honest it feels like the end of the line for me, I should never have been put in these circumstances. Please let there be light at the end of the tunnel.

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  10. We have been waiting a very long time for justice in this matter.
    I have lost at least £45000 because of these changes. It is absolutely atrocious that this was allowed to happen.
    I am so grateful to all the people who are fighting on our behalf.
    Hopefully we will get some justice this time.
    Fingers crossed

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  11. Thank you for doing this for us. So pleased it looks like we have a chance at last. I had given up hope. Should have got my pension 6 years ago. I lost my husband 18 months ago and have been struggling.
    Good Luck

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  12. At long last someone is fighting for us i had to wait till i was 66 before i got my pension i’m still working i’m 67 this year there are far more people older than me who should not be working let all keep fingers crossed

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  13. Good to hear fresh eyes and hope the ‘groups’ issue gets put to bed – 3.8million women are waiting for compensation not just ‘activists’ but we are all grateful to you and the groups keeping the ‘issue’ alive!

    Praying the full restitution is the default and anything less the exception being looked at.

    If we can contact millions for NHS vaccines why not contact ’50s women for pensions.

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  14. Hi
    Andrew Gwynne is an outstanding MP and I put total faith in him .. thank you for everything you are doing for the Back to 60s Women.. this has been a long hard near impossible fight ..

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  15. We were never informed about the retirement age going to up to sixty-six, the government should pay up what they’ve stolen from us and they should put the retirement age back down to sixty. Thankyou to all of the team for being our voices.

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  16. Thank you for helping. Absolutely criminal what they did corrupt disgusting 😡how they got away with it I’ll never now makes me so angry. Im still waiting for mine!! 4yrs now.

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  17. Thank you so much everyone involved for keeping up the Fight for Justice for the 50s Women, who have been so badly treated !!!!.

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  18. This is very positive so thank you David for highlighting all of this and thanks to the team for all they do to keep the ambers burning for us all. I’m holding much hope, not for just me but for all 50’s women who have been treated appallingly. Lives have been lost because they didn’t survive without their State Pension they worked hard all their lives for.Lack of any proper benefits that couldn’t bridge the huge gap financially until the new age to receive our State Pensions. Homes that have been lost or sold to survive and eat. The shame, worry and stress this has all caused..what figure can you put on that and loss of life? The whole situation that was thrust upon us without any official letter. Women continually working hard and killing themselves in their 60’s to wait out the multiple years for their State Pension. The State Pension at 60 years of age shouldn’t ever have been taken away from us..too many casualties already and the rest of us are either killing ourselves working flat out, husbands are working longer than their retirement age to help their wives out or using what little reserves we managed to put by for a Happy Retirement which is in fact and truth a living nightmare. Reverse this decision before more health casualties and deaths occur. Release those having to work so in those pandemic era youngsters can have their jobs. We are done so hear us, help us and put the action into place and no empty words and promises for these women who are worn out and want our State Pensions NOW.

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  19. The DWP commented again yesterday stated that the equalisation of the pension age was instigated to correct a gender inequality issue of long standing . They cannot fail to understand the Long standing and multifaceted inequality faced by women , this is especially evident in the workplace and in pensions state , public sector snd private . How can hide behind this statement yet again . It is factual that women have smaller pension pots in total to men and the reasons are clear – inequality through life in many areas.

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  20. Thanyou so much David ,cant begin to tell you how grateful I am for all you amazing hard work and your persistence its much appreciated.The Govt need to know We Are Not Going Away (tho sadly so many dear ladies have passed away ) and actually address our plight to do the right thing .
    Thankyou again David ; its given some hope to have light in the tunnel towards Pension Justice even in a really dark time .
    Kind regards and best wishes to you and you family
    Carol

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  21. Hopefully our long wait could be over as there is light at the end of the tunnel with this news.
    Sincere thanks to all of those who are fighting for us to rectify the injustice carried out against all the women born in the 1950s – and fingers crossed we get the result we all want. Full Restitution, after all it is rightfully ours!
    Thanks again to all.

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  22. I started work when I was16 ….I’m now 62 and still the have no state pension ….isn’t it time the Government stopped talking about inequality’s d actually did something …

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  23. This is a huge injustice that needs to be put right , I’m 62 this year and I’m working 50 hours a week to keep myself going as a single person , I should not have to do this in this country , I’ve worked all my life and brought up 3 lovely hard working children , I need my time now , and this should never have been allowed , why not make the youngsters put into a pension pot as soon as they start work, not take it away from 1950s women this is unacceptable in this society , and by making us work later in our lives , it’s going to cost them more in sickness benefits , and illness , so the government will save nothing , as 50s women won’t be able to work some of them so they will take benefits because of illness , therefore it will cost the government more in housing and council tax benefits ! And care allowance , so this government needs to do the right thing and give us our pension we worked so hard for , by letting 50s born people retire more work available to get the youngsters of their backsides more jobs for them !!

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  24. I welcome this as a 1955 born woman been fighting this for over 8 years. Completely ruined my retirement with my husband who is six years older. I have struggled to work due to ill health in the past two years. Finally got to retire in March after having to declare going bust due to no pension, no savings and very little work. I have lost over £56,000 because I elected to pay full stamp which I did for 48 years! An absolute travesty ….

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  25. David!
    Thank you for this news of hope! We are so glad that you continue to help us.
    We ARE going in the right direction and Backto60 joining with CEDAW has started to shake the boat.They are worried,very worried.
    I remember Labour making a feeble attempt to pay us something meagre if they won the parliamentary seat.Do they really think we are that stupid?&
    It’s more than high time to get a substantial resolution- the sooner the better.
    How dare they think that hard working women’s lives are less important than space transporters – which cost millions.
    Yes, it’s our pension money they are using!
    So we’ll just sit in the street, homeless, sleep in the undergrowth, eatifrom food banks and watch the space transporters disappear in the direction of the moon.
    I tell you all, when we get this sorted out in our favour, there will be a massive celebration and CEDAW will thrive. Bring it on!

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  26. Cheated out of years due to not informing early enough if this was a private company everyone would be able to claim under consumer protection for being miss selling especially when they also advised us to pay married woman’s national insurance losing out again when our children were young lots could only work part time didn’t have the luxury of nursery places even childminders yes they are to rise again to 68 but my god they have plenty of time to plan

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  27. The APPG has no official standing within Parliament and they are basically just interest groups for MPs. With an 80plus seat majority, this Government will simply ignore anything, be it the APPG, the PHSO or CedawPT.

    We will not get anywhere.

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  28. i would just like to say that it is not only women born in the 50s, I was born in Jan 1960 and faced inequality in the work place, stayed at home to take care of children, done part time work and encouraged to pay half stamp (as I was supposed to be able claim against my husbands) which apparently had no affect towards my pension. I was able to take full time work in late 30s but didnt earn enough due to my job being being in the lower paid bracket as many jobs were for women, so therefor unable to afford a private pension. When I finally educated myself and got into a slightly better pay, I could then take out a private pension in my mid 40s. But hey, now i have learnt that the 7 years I paid into private pension plus the 6 years I couldnt afford one. My company (local gov) neglected to inform us that as we had all been opted out of serps that those years did not count towards our pension. at this rate I will be working until I am 77 to get my full state pension. LOL!!

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    • THIS IS NOT ALL ABOUT MONEY!! For me, at its basest is that I was ROBBED of a WHOLE YEAR with my husband. He was terminally ill, but to survive I had to keep working! I had geared to retire at 60 but 6 more years were added. There is a low age of death in his family and mine isn’t great either. I had to work until days before his death. Those with financial issues MIGHT get recompensed but those who have died waiting and people like me left alone and bereft WILL NOT. I met my lad when I was just 15 & had recently started work!! I am 64 on 19th June….I am too ill to work after a 47 year working life! BUT OFFICIALLY I STILL HAVE 2 MORE YEARS TO WORK!!!! Having lost my soul mate….that lost year meant the difference between a brief one year retirement together and NONE!! I am ANGRY on top of being bereft. I don’t really care about the money, the injustice of mistreatment etc. On top of this bear in mind the vast majority of part time workers are WOMEN. Females forced to do part time work to care for kids & others who were ill or frail….in my case I was doing up to 6 cleaning jobs at once, running the family home and studying to get qualifications not available to me when I left school. These part timers were for a long time NOT permitted to take out a private pension. I was 40 when this became legal to do, but earnings stunted the value anyway of doing this. Some think this is all about greed and money……..well, NO IT ISN’T!!! It means I am not financially independent after a very long working life, often working over 80 hrs a week, and worse still, had NO retirement with my hardworking hubby who worked 42 yrs till too ill to work further. …and now…..having to FIGHT for justice? Even other women condemn people like me and THAT my friends is the deepest insult.

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  29. I was born in 1957 , and have never received any letter informing of any changes to my retirement form 60- to 66.
    This means I’ve have to wait 6 years not 18mths that some are saying

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  30. It is to be hoped that this long standing festering issue is not going to be a lot more long standing and festering. Like when we’re all dead…

    fpender1@outlook.com

    Sent from Mail for Windows 10

    ________________________________

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  31. Thankyou so much David, I really thought that this was the end of the fight for us 50swomen, I so hope there is a light at the end of a tunnel, I lost a very close friend only weeks ago that worked all her life for NHS and she was so looking forward to retirement, I havevto fight this for all 50s women, we so deserve this

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  32. Great news. But I do hope that this can gather some momentum as sadly we have lost women who would have been entitled under the review and that will continue as sadly more ladies pass.
    There must be some impetus to ensure that if there is to be compensation that women if the 50’s get it quickly or an interim payment to pay off debts – relax- and enjoy their later years.
    I am now in receipt of my pension but it was tough going until I received it. Life went on hold. I am lucky as my husband continued working.
    Well done that all the groups are coming together.

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  33. It was not good enough of the government to assume 1950’s women knew this was happening at all. 1950’s Women suffered from low pay, child birth, part time work, poor pension pots, burn out doing far too much to keep a family going. Where as most men stay in full time work, have little to do with house work or child care and divorce us when we are burnt out. I contacted the DWP at age of 58 to register for my pension at 60 like my older sisters. I was distraught to find this was not so. I ended up staying in a caravan for 2 years. Health deteriorated unable to do heavy work due to scoliosis. I was totally let down.

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  34. PLEASE ACT IMMEDIATELY how long do you q us to wait. I can honestly say i cannot do this sny more i am waiting on a daily basis for news that this is sorted. Does anyone know whats its like to live in constant state of worry about entitlement i should have receeived 3 years ago.
    This is not living and from my point of view you might as well just stick a knife in me and kill me off rather than this torture. Hope all in government are proud of the way they are handling this situation. There is no explanation that could justify any of this.

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  35. FAO David Hencke
    I only found out by accident through a colleague approx 2 years before I was due to retire at 60 which should have been in December 2012 . I was shocked and couldn’t believe that I was
    going to have to wait for another 3 years to claim my Pension in September 2015 at such short notice ! I also found out just before I went to claim my State Pension that there were to be two different rates of pension. .pre and post retirement dates April 6th 2016.
    Unfortunately for me I retired before April 6th 2016 so I was assessed on the old basic Lower Rate , at that time approx £40 a week less than the new Higher Rate .Men of exactly the same age born in l952 were placed on the New Higher Rate .
    Women who were just a couple of months younger than me ,who started school and work at the same time as me were placed on the New Higher Rate .So it was a double disadvantage for me. born in the wrong month and the wrong sex .I thought this change was about equality ?? The consequences of these changes has bought financial hardship ,mental health issues , a feeling of worthlesness , worry and anxiety to these hard working, ,worn out 1950s born Women .They deserve full retribution .
    I sincerely hope they get redress
    Thank you

    Like

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