IAN BACKS CAMPAIGN AGAINST UNFAIR CHANGES TO WOMEN’S STATE PENSION AGE

Ian is backing Age UK’s campaign against Government plans which will see thousands of women waiting up to two years longer for their state pension than promised under the Coalition agreement.

Ian met with South Edinburgh residents who were protesting against the changes in Westminster at a mass lobby organised by Age UK.  They are part of the 330,000 women who will be worst affected by the changes being introduced by the Tory Lib Dem Government.

Ian has joined hundreds of MPs who have signed an Early Day Motion to reverse the changes which break the Coalition Agreement’s pledge to hold off speeding up the equalisation of the State Pension Age.

In its current form the Pensions Bill intends to bring forward equalisation of the State Pension Age to 65 to 2018, instead of 2020 as previously planned. Pensions Age for both men and women will then increase to 66 by 2020. All women born between 6th April 1953 and 5th April 1960 will be affected by the changes. State Pension Age will be increased for 2.6 million women, but 330,000 women across the country will be hit hardest, having to wait between 18 months and two years longer for their state pension.

Ian said: “These proposals will hurt thousands of hard-working women who believed their retirement was just around the corner. Many are being forced to wait up to two years longer and stand to lose up to £10,000 as a result. This is the second time these women’s pension has been delayed and it is unfair to expect them to postpone their retirement plans.

“Working longer is not an option for many of this age group with the caring responsibilities and health problems they face. In addition to these difficulties these women are anxious about how they will make ends meet if these proposals go ahead. After paying into their pensions all their working lives these women don’t deserve a second delay to their state pension.”

Earlier this year in the House of Lords debate on the Bill Peers showed strong support for reversing the proposals. The vote was narrowly lost, with 214 votes in favour of the amendment and 226 against, but the close result shows the strength of the level of support for the campaign.

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Ian Murray for Edinburgh South