Shropshire pensions campaigners stepping up compensation campaign

Shropshire women born in the 1950s say they aren't going away in their fight for pensions justice.

South Shropshire WASPI campaign co-ordinator Vivien Hollis
South Shropshire WASPI campaign co-ordinator Vivien Hollis

A new campaign group called South Shropshire Women Against State Pension Injustice (WASPI) has been created to push for the issue to be resolved before "more 1950s women die".

South Shropshire WASPI campaign co-ordinator Vivien Hollis, who lives near Ludlow, said there are 32,180 women who were born in the 1950s in the county.

Their state pension ages were suddenly changed from 60 to 65, and campaigners say the sudden change some years ago threw retirement plans into disarray. They say they weren't given proper notice.

Ms Hollis said campaigners are not looking to go back to retirement at age 60; they want compensation.

She said: "It's important to understand that we are not against equalisation and we are not asking for our pension age to return to 60 but we do not agree with the unfair way changes were implemented, leaving women no time to make alternative plans.”

Almost a year ago the Parliamentary & Health Service Ombudsman ruled that the Department for Work and Pensions was guilty of maladministration in failing to give proper notice to 3.8 million women born in the 1950s whose State Pension Age was subjected to a series of changes.

Since then the ombudsman has been investigating whether this maladministration resulted in injustice - and if so, how the women involved should be compensated.

The South Shropshire WASPI women would like to hear from local women born in the 1950s who experienced maladministration when they were not given proper notice that they would have to wait several more years for their state pension.

Ms Hollis said: "This had disastrous results. Women found that their plans for retirement at 60 were suddenly overturned without warning.

"Some had to sell or re-mortgage their homes, others had to continue working despite ill health, and others had to abandon commitments they had made to their families to provide care for grandchildren or elderly relatives.

All were deprived without proper notice of the pension which they had expected to receive at 60.

“We are asking for justice in the form of fair and fast compensation before more 1950s women die. The 1950s women of Shropshire can show the Government that we are not going away!"

To find out more or to join the new South Shropshire Women Against State Pension Injustice (WASPI) campaign you can follow the group on Facebook WASPI South Shropshire Supporters Group, or email waspisouthshropshire@outlook.com

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