Women storm Parliament over pensions

Amber Valley WASPIs at Westminster with Nigel Mills MP
Amber Valley WASPIs at Westminster with Nigel Mills MP
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A group of Amber Valley women joined thousands of others in London to demonstrate against state pension inequality outside the Houses of Parliament.

They group of 27 joined fellow members of campaign group Women Against State Pension Inequalty (WASPI) from all over the country to raise awareness of their aim to get fairer transitional arrangements for the those unfairly affected by changes to the state pension age.

In 1995 the retirement age for women was increased from 60-65, in-line with men’s, but this changed again in 2011 to 66 for both men and women.

But many of the women affected received no notification of the changes and so failed to plan for the additional time period without an income.

It was estimated that around 2,500 people attended the rally, which began with the 200-strong WASPI choir singing the WASPI Anthem, a song that was written by one of the members.

They were then joined by 60 Members of Parliament from the all-party parliamentary group to support the WASPI campaign.

Women were reassured that while not all MPs were supportive, there were a lot of people inside Parliament who were speaking up for them.

The rally ended with a call from organisers to lobby their MPs for support, which ten members representing the Amber Valley group did.

They met with Amber Valley MP Nigel Mills, who they had met with previously when the group was first formed.

Judi Hart, the Amber Valley WASPI co-ordinator, put questions to Mr Mills and group members also gave more personal examples of the hardship they were facing as a result of having to wait so much longer to get their state pension.

Mr Mills asked the group for a proposal to be put in writing to him for his consideration which the representatives of the group agreed to do.

Several transitional options are being considered by the Government at present, one of which being a reduced pension until they reach their retirement age and are able collect a full pension.

For more information on the Amber Valley WASPI group, please contact waspiambervalley@gmail.com.