With some women born in the 1950s arguing they have been hit hard by changes in the pension age, Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan writes to over 3,200 city women to raise awareness of help available.
Stephen Morgan MP, a long-time supporter of the WASPI campaign to achieve fair transitional state pension arrangements for women born in the 1950s, has been working with Solent WASPI, a local group of women affected, to raise the profile of concerns and support for women affected.
Activities have included attending debates and events, as well as hosting information mornings at the MP’s constituency office on Albert Road, Southsea.
Despite local and parliamentary actions, the Government are not listening and as a result the MP has been working with Solent WASPI to make sure estimated 9,000 women affected in Portsmouth know how they can complain and get help.
In 1995 The Pension Act, designed to equalise the pension age between men and women, was introduced in the UK. The State Pension Age for women was raised to 65.
The original plan was for the equalisation to be phased in over 10 years, however, the process was sped up by the 2011 Pensions Act, giving women born in the 1950s little time to plan and scuppering their long-term retirement plans.
On the matter Stephen Morgan MP said:
“I agree that men and women should have the same state pension age. What I do not agree with is the unfair manner in which it has been delivered.
Women in Portsmouth and across the UK have been forced to reconsider retirement plans which they had planned years before.
Some women are facing financial hardship as a result of decisions they made prior to the introduction of SPA equalisation. This is not acceptable.”
In an attempt reach women affected or may be interested in his constituency, the MP has sent out over 3,200 letters. The correspondence provides background information and information about how support is available.
Mr. Morgan has added:
“I think it is essential that the women affected in our city know that they are not alone in this struggle.
I hope that by alerting them to the highly organised, hard working women already championing this matter in Portsmouth, it will make the Government finally listen to our concerns.”
The Government has refused to enter into discussions with the women effected, with former Pensions Minister, Baroness Ros Altmann stating that Ian Duncan Smith refused to engage with the 1950s women and informed her that they would go away sooner or later.
Mr. Morgan has said that he will continue to support that campaign:
“I regularly meet with Solent WASPI who are working tirelessly and passionately on the injustice we see on these pension age changes.
I will continue to ensure their voice is heard in Parliament and that I do everything I can for the 9,000 women and their families who are effected in Portsmouth”.