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New hope for Waspi campaign

Ombudsman may seek inquiry into women’s pensions


Women born in the 1950s are campaigning against changes to state pensions


An investigation into changes to women’s state pensions may be launched before the end of the year by the Parliamentary Ombudsman, it emerged yesterday.

Liberal Democrat MP Stephen Lloyd said the ombudsman is assessing whether to pursue an inquiry around the way the 1995 Pensions Act was communicated to the women affected by pushing back the retirement age.

Mr Lloyd’s comments follow another rally in Westminster by the Women Against State Pensions Inequality (Waspi) campaign who claim they were badly informed by changes that mean those born in the 1950s have been denied expectations of retiring at 60.

“I confidently believe [the Ombudsman] will find eventually that the DWP [Department for Work and Pensions] failed in their duty to communicate every single year from 1995 onwards to women that the pension age would be changing 30 years hence,” Mr Lloyd told the New Model Adviser website.

“I would hope that the ombudsman will find the DWP culpable in failing to communicate properly and I would also hope that they come up with a set of recommendations for compensation.”

His comments came as hundreds of women descended on Westminster and the work and pensions committee published correspondence between the government and Waspi.

Commenting on the correspondence, committee chairman, Frank Field, said: “Since the committee published its report on this matter, I have received a couple of hundred letters from women who I believe have been put in a grotesquely disadvantaged position by the Government.

“All these letters have conveyed the hardship and sense of injustice felt by affected women, a number of whom have said that they want to leave work now, even if that meant a slightly reduced pension.

“I have sent letters, published this morning, to the chairs of WASPI, WASPI Glasgow and Lanarkshire and the Minister, on this issue. ”

18 Comments to Ombudsman may seek inquiry into women’s pensions

  1. I was never sent a letter from the DWP advising me that I would not receive my State Pension until I was 66 nor were any of my friends or colleagues. I was shocked when I eventually found out. I am now 67 years old and have to carry on working until I am 70 as I do not have any savings to fall back on and my husband is of ill health and not worked for 3 years. My husband can’t get any benefits because I work. I am the sole breadwinner and I am tired after working for 48 years. I have a difficult HR job in a legal office with regular new updates to absorb. I can’t afford to get an easier job because I need the money to support myself and my husband. Because of the shortage of money we had to re-mortgage our house so we still have payments to meet. If I was to receive my back payment of pension due I could retire. Each day is a hardship.

    • I also never received any notification of the change in age for the state pension. I did right to my local MP, he replied with the news that we were all told in a letter, Very strange that I know so many of my age that also did not receive a letter, perhaps they were all lost in the post! We all have different challenges we are trying to deal with but we are all suffering through no fault of out own. Very Sad!

  2. Like others I was born in 1956 and have worked all my life even during my children’s younger years .
    I can assure the government that I have never received notification of change of retirement age , It came as a complete shock .
    Although I understand the need to start equalising the pension age it seems extremely unfair to target one group of people to bare the burden .
    Like most women of my generation I have paid my NI contributions for over40 years only to find that we are expected to wait another 6 years to receive state benefits meanwhile using my savings to top up my wages from my part time job .

  3. Fellow Waspis. We know we weren’t informed. We know we are entitled to our pension at 60 as that was the contract when we started paying in. No court on this earth will find evidence to the contrary at the review in June, and despite the government’s procrastination we will win. We cannot fail. A contract is a contract, any changes to any contract has to be agreed by all parties. It didn’t happen. The government should be very very worried because not only will we get our pension, we’ll be entitled to it being backdated and we possibly all have a right to compensation for non payment. If I thought there was no case, in that we had been informed and that we’d had equal opportunities in the workplace from day 1 of paying in, I would completely accept the situation. As it is, we weren’t, and the evidence is there for all to see. Absolutely and unequivocally. The government can dress it up any way they like but the facts remain the same, the truth never changes. We Waspis will be celebrating soon.

  4. I have never received any letter from dwp about anything. I had heard about pension ages changing in 2020, yes in 2020. As I was born in 1955 I had no need to worry as I would be already retired and getting my pension by then. Why do they lie to us? I am in bad health and find each day harder and harder. I’m not sure I can carry on working till I’m 66. I also have to care for my 92 year old mother and it’s just making me so miserable.

  5. Please, please, please all I ask is for someone to look into the way that the post 1950’s woman have been treated, to be open and honest unlike the government who I feel has gone behind my back and has crept legislation in through the back door. And to add insult to injury past Pension Ministers have stated that they regret fast tracking the State Pension age for woman born post 1950. However, they have chosen to ignore our current pleas. In August 2009 I was verbally told by a work colleague that there had been a change in the retirement age. I phoned the DWP where they confirmed my worst fear, that the date of my retirement had been changed to 6th March 2019. Stunned, I requested a pension forecast which I received on 11th September 2009 confirming this. At this point I was only 5 years 17 days away from my anticipated receipt of my State Pension at 60 years. (5 yrs 17dys notice to be informed that my pension has been deferred for 4 yrs 5mth and 9dys) and in February 2012 I received a further letter stating that the earliest date for which I would be entitled to a state pension was 6th September 2020. My world fell apart, I was devastated as originally I was supposed to be retiring in 28th September 2014.
    The lack of notice with regards pension changes took away any control I may have had over my future and due to this and working in a job that has become more stressful as I have increased in age, I am currently on antidepressants and have been since October 2015. In addition, due to increased work pressure brought on by staffing cuts and introduction of new technology, I have lost confidence in a field I was so respected. I feel I had neither the energy nor motivation for to continue; I am physically and mentally exhausted by almost 48 years of working life. For these reasons I had now been put in a position that I have no option but to take early retirement on 31st March 2017. This decision was for the sake of my health, but has come at a financial cost. I have always been so mindful with regards to paperwork, and although my husband and I have always been below the average wage earner we always have lived within our means. In-fact I can honestly say that my filing system is better than the DWP’s as I have all my P60’s since the year I first started work in 1969. I honestly do believe that the DWP has failed to stick to its own standards and has been guilty of maladministration by failing to alert people to the precariousness of their position sufficiently early to enable them to arrange their financial affairs differently. My small works pension is £259.00 a month, and I have to live off that and our hard earned savings that we put away for our retirement years.
    All I ask is for the Ombudsman to look openly and honestly at the way we have treated and for the government to put right the wrong that they have done.

  6. Surely this nonsense will be over soon. It’s obvious that with that the maladministration complaint of no letter has been found to be false. If there are a few genuine maladministration complaints, get them sorted , pay the £35 and be done with.
    Also the other stupid route of the PR will at last be dealt with on Friday 30th. It doesn’t require the whole two hours to confirm what was already decided. No case.
    Then after this distraction by a group of mainly selfish women is at last put to bed can we concentrate on reviewing the welfare system which is the root cause of any issue.

  7. My story is not dissimilar to others. Born Dec 54 always worked and paid in over and above NI stamps. Now,after 4years and another two years to go my savings are drying up and nothing to fall back on!! Am separated, still working albeit part-time due to ill health, have two married daughters who have their families also paying NI stamps!! I am worried about future each day owing to not having my SP back in December 2015. Please help.

  8. I have worked all my life and paid tax. I have never received any benefits.I will be totally disadvantaged if i have to wait until i am 68 to get a pension. I am a single 54 year old and have to work 12 days in a row to make ends health is not great. Please tell me how I will pay my bills.?

  9. Made redundant at 63…no jobs available nobody will employ us full stop so no job no income struggling after working from 15 yrs of age. I heard abt it less than 18 months before I expected my pension at 60 even the DWP Web site still said 60 was retirement age how was I supposed to know then. No time to even try to make adjustment there were no private pensions available during my working life. savings that should have supported me in retirement now being used to live off it is a dead certainty that I will now become a burden on society when savings are gone …how short sighted can a government get

  10. If a lot of women were able to retire they would leave jobs open for younger generations , and younger ones spend money keeping the economy moving , as an older person would like the time looking after my mother , even do voluntary work ,

  11. My circumstances changed when I took VER from my employer.
    My relationship broke down, I have tried to seek employment but feel my age has been a disadvantage.
    I am struggling financially which is affecting my physical and mental wellbeing.
    I have had three jobs most of my working life.
    I feel the Government have failed to inform and left us to rot due to lack of information.

  12. Please God there will be something done to help us to receive our pensions which is our due. We entered into a contract with the government when we began our working lives however the goalposts have been moved without notifying me and others. Not once but 3 times! Twice with the age limit and then increasing the limit from 30 to 35 years of qualifying years. Absolutely disgraceful targeting of robbery. This type of callous and cruel treatment of ladies and gentlemen is beyond belief. you must know that it is unacceptable behaviour because it appears to me how nothing has been reported in the media.Even when lots of activities and events are happening BBC comments on newsreader gets caught up in traffic! Because we are protesting against the treatment we have received. Please help us you know as do all the MPs who voted in our favour but why nothing has been done in rectifying this pushing the most vulnerable people the elderly,sick into continual mounting poverty and sadly for some early death. Thank you for taking the time to read and reflect on the right response. I have a chronic disease and l am constantly in pain and l have to work until l am 65yrs 7 MTHS. I am 64yrs now. I don’t think I am going to make it. I know you have the opportunity to change what is happening, please make a stand for justice for all those whose voices have been silenced and disregarded.

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