Women from all over NW Kent will be joining others from across the country in London on June 29 to take part in a demonstration outside the Houses of Parliament when they will be protesting against increases in the State Pension age that have left the retirement plans of many in tatters.

Members of a local group will be joining in the protest organised by Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI), which is fighting increases in pension age that disproportionately affect women born in the 1950s.

Why are women campaigning?

The 1995 Pensions Act brought in a gradual rise to equalise women’s State Pension Age with men’s at age 65 by 2020, beginning with women born after April 6, 1950. The Department of Work and Pensions failed to notify women individually.

In 2009 the Department of Work and Pensions began a programme of writing to women individually, by age group, to inform them of their new State Pension Age. This was halted in the run-up to the 2011 Pensions Act. Only women born before April 5, 1953 were notified in this mailing.

Then in November 2011, the 2011 Pensions Act accelerated the increase in State Pension Age taking it to age 66 for both men and women by 2020.

Finally, in 2012: the Department of Work and Pensions began to notify women born on or after April 6, 1953 of their latest State Pension Age. For most women, by now in their late 50s, it was the first time they had heard that they would not retire at 60 as planned. Some women had only 12 months’ notice before they reached 60.

This series of changes without proper notification has left many women in this age group with insufficient time to make alternative pension arrangements. The campaign aims to get better transitional pension arrangements in place for women born in the 1950’s.

To find out more about the WASPI campaign visit www.waspi.co.uk

NW Kent group contact: Dilys Lawler – nwkwaspi@hotmail.com / Facebook – nwkwaspi