Woman Visits No. 10 to Protest Against Pension Changes as Part of Age UK’s Continuing Campaign

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Women helped deliver a giant postcard to Prime Minister David Cameron on Monday 12 September 2011, urging him not to increase the women’s State Pension Age beyond 65 until 2020.

This is the Government’s last chance to do the right thing by thousands of hard-working women up and down the country who are being penalised by the Pensions Bill.

Women helped deliver a giant postcard to Prime Minister, David Cameron on Monday 12 September 2011, urging him not to increase the women’s State Pension Age beyond 65 until 2020.

The postcard, which was delivered by six women as part of Age UK’s continuing campaign, reminded the Prime Minister that the Coalition Government is breaking its promise by raising the women’s state pension age earlier than planned.

Proposals in the Pensions Bill – soon to receive its final reading in Parliament - will see thousands of women forced to wait an extra two years for their state pension with less than seven years notice to plan for the change. Age UK is warning that this doesn’t leave enough time to plan for a later state pension age and risks plunging hundreds of thousands of women in to poverty. (http://www.ageuk.org.uk/money-matters/pensions/how-the-pensions-bill-will-affect-you/)

Work and Pensions Minister Iain Duncan Smith promised in Parliament that the Government would consider changes to the Pensions Bill to at least reduce the impact of the proposals, but so far the Government has not announced any changes.

330,000 women born between December 1953 and October 1954 will be hit hardest, having to wait between 18 months and two years longer for their state pension. The 33,000 women who will have to wait an extra two years, will lose on average £10,000 of state pension income as a result. These women have already been asked to move their State Pension Age to 65 and this is the second time they will face having to retire even later. (The number of women affected is approximately 330,000 - http://www.dwp.gov.uk/docs/cp-nov10-spa-66-full-document.pdf)

Michelle Mitchell, charity director at Age UK said: “This is the Government’s last chance to do the right thing by thousands of hard-working women up and down the country who are being penalised by the Pensions Bill. We are simply asking them to stick to their original pledge not to raise the state pension age before 2020 for women.

“At the very least, we are calling on the Government to mitigate the effects of the worst affected groups of women by capping any increase to the state pensions age to 18 months or less. We also want to see a clear plan of action as to how all the women affected will be contacted to inform them of the changes.

“The battle on this issue is not over. MPs across all the political party’s recognise the unfairness of these changes. By contacting your MP now you can still make a difference and persuade the Government to change its mind.”

To find out more about the state pension age campaign and get involved, visit our website http://www.ageuk.org.uk/spa now to find out more.

ENDS

Notes to editors

  •     Case studies and Age UK spokespeople are available for interview. To arrange, please contact Liz Fairweather: 020 3033 1718 or email: liz.fairweather(at)ageuk(dot)org(dot)uk
  •     The number of women affected is approximately 330,000 http://www.dwp.gov.uk/docs/cp-nov10-spa-66-full-document.pdf
  •     For media enquiries relating to Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland please contact the appropriate national office: Age Scotland on 0131 668 8055, Age Cymru on 029 2043 1562 and Age NI on 028 9024 5729.
  •     Age UK is the new force combining Age Concern and Help the Aged, dedicated to improving later life. We provide free information, advice and support to over five million people; commercial products and services to over one million customers; and research and campaign on the issues that matter to people in later life. Our work focuses on five key areas: money matters, health and well being, home and care, work and training and leisure and lifestyle. We work with our national partners, Age Scotland, Age Cymru and Age NI (together the Age UK Family), our local Age UK partners in England and local Age Concerns. We also work internationally for people in later life as a member of the DEC and with our sister charity Help Age International.
  •     Age UK is a charitable company limited by guarantee and registered in England (registered charity number 1128267 and company number 6825798). Age Concern England and Help the Aged (both registered charities), and their trading and other associated companies merged on the 1st April 2009. Together they have formed the Age UK Group (“we”). Charitable services are offered through Age UK and commercial products are offered by the Charity’s trading companies, which donate their net profits to Age UK (the Charity).

MM/SW/SK/MC

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