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Alex demands parity of treatment for WASPI

Shadow Pensions Minister, Alex Cunningham MP, today demanded parity of treatment for women born in the 1950s that were unfairly affected by the Tory changes in the State Pension Age.

Alex’s intervention follows the recommendation of the Cridland Review which outlined that everyone should receive at least 10 years notice of an increase in the State Pension Age.  Most 50s born women got less than half that and are now struggling to plan for their futures.

The WASPI (Women Against State Pension Increase) campaign has been focusing on the injustice that they have faced with many women not receiving adequate notice, for which the Government have accepted that more could have been done to the communicate the changes.

The issue has been debated on numerous occasions in Parliament during recent months, and Labour have thrown their weight behind an option of extending Pension Tax Credit for WASPI women, and are now calling on the Government to recognise that they simply cannot ignore the women who are facing difficulty through no fault of their own.

Asking a question during Work and Pension Questions in the House of Commons, Alex said:

“Labour will oppose the earlier increase in the State Pension Age and the end of the triple lock as recommended in last week’s Cridland Report.

“But we also welcome the statement from John Cridland that there should be at least 10 years notice given of any age increase.  Does the Government agree Cridland and if so will Ministers admit they got it badly wrong with the WASPI women and at least back Labour’s proposals for the extension of Pension Tax Credit?”

Pensions Minister, Richard Harrington MP, sidestepped Labour’s question by simply reaffirming that the Government would respond to the Cridland review by the end of May.

Afterwards Alex said:  

“This isn’t good enough – John Cridland may not have recommended changes for the WASPI women but he made it clear in both his report and at its launch that people ought to be given proper notice of at least 10 years of pension age changes.  The Government should support him in that and recognise that the WASPI women were never given the chance to plan for their future they ought to have had.”