Prime Minister discusses pension reforms at Age UK

David Cameron discusses pension reform

This week we have a blog from Caroline Abrahams, Age UK’s Charity Director.

It’s not every day that three Government Ministers come to our offices but that’s what happened earlier this week.

On Tuesday we were delighted to be able to offer around sixty older people the opportunity to talk to the Prime Minister, David Cameron, the Secretary of State for Work & Pensions, Iain Duncan Smith and the Pensions Minister, Steve Webb.

The event coincided with the publication of the Government’s Taxation of Pensions Bill, which will put into law the huge shake up of the pension system announced by the Chancellor in the Budget earlier this year.

A round table of ‘older’ Age UK staff also had the opportunity to discuss the pension reforms and other big issues for them with the Prime Minister before he joined the larger group of older people, Iain Duncan Smith and Steve Webb, where he briefly outlined the pension changes to come.

Among other things, the Prime Minister said “I think if you’ve worked hard and saved during your life you deserve responsibility in retirement about how you spend the money that you’ve worked so hard for and saved so hard for.”

He explained that the reforms would allow people to tap into their savings and their pension as they grow older, providing additional flexibility and additional responsibility.

But of course, while Age UK supports the principle of increasing choice, in the end you can only spend your pension savings once and first and foremost a pension is there to provide a secure income throughout retirement – which we all hope will last a long time.

In addition, it’s important to remember that the average private pension pot is worth less than £30,000 so the idea of ‘choice’ may not always be very meaningful; and that many older people have no private pension at all, particularly many women.

So while we support any moves that will improve pensions for current and future generations, ensuring that every older person has enough money to enjoy a secure and comfortable retirement will be as big an issue after the Government’s reforms come into force next year as it is today. And that is why we are pressing all the political parties to commit to ambitious but realistic plans to reduce pensioner poverty at the next Election. And more immediately, it is why this is our inaugural End Pensioner Poverty Week campaign(13 – 19 October).

The Prime Minister was politely but robustly challenged by the older people at our event about the vital need to do more for the 1.6 million pensioners currently living in poverty, for whom this week’s announcement means very little. And we will continue to keep the pressure up on this Government and on the next Government too, whatever the outcome of the 2015 General Election turns out to be!


Author: Age UK

Age UK is dedicated to helping everyone make the most of later life. In the UK we help more than 7 million older people each year by providing advice, combating loneliness and enabling independence. Locally, we work as part of a network of independent charities which includes Age UK, Age Cymru, Age NI and Age Scotland and over 150 local Age UK partners in England and Wales.

56 thoughts on “Prime Minister discusses pension reforms at Age UK”

  1. He says “I think if you’ve worked hard and saved during your life you deserve responsibility in retirement about how you spend the money’
    But what about the women who worked hard from 15 years of age but had no chance to save for a private pension because there was no equality of wages with men for them? They have no pension pots to dip into so they are forced to work longer and longer because of state pension age increases. Those women who worked in menial jobs have age related complaints, widows and single women are hardest hit, they have no support. They didn’t have enough notice of the last age rise and their lives are devastated, they are the scapegoats for their ‘crime’ of being born in 1953/1954/1955 It’s alright for people in cushy jobs singing the praises of working longer, but in reality it’s very unfair on the women (and men) who have worked and contributed in good faith but are now being robbed of their rightful state pension and the bit of freedom they well deserve. For a weary woman who all her life thought she’d be able to retire at 60, but who then gracefully accepted an increase on a rolling scale, the addition of an extra 18 months is asking too much!

    1. I would like to draw the attention of those born 1953 -1955 to further detriments imposed by the new 2016 state pension, that some of them are likely to experience.

      Women (and some men) who have spent a number of years working part time and in lower paid jobs in the public sector and building up a small public sector pension: even if you have 35 years plus NI contributions you won’t get the full flat rate state pension. Your state pension will be reduced because your employer contracted you out, and you paid slightly less NI than those contracted in. Nor will you have the chance to fully make up the shortfall @ an increase of £4.14 per year through NI contributions from 2016. Even if you still have a job, you will not be able to make those contributions beyond your state pension age.

      When I raised this I was told that I would not receive any less pension than I would have done under the old state pension, and that I had benefited by paying 1.5% less NI. I would point out that those in the LGPS have paid a further 6% of their salary into their pension scheme, four times as much as the reduced NI.

      The suggestion of being no worse off does not take account of other changes brought in by the new state pension:
      1. Women who were relying on being able to use some of their spouse’s NI record won’t be able to eg those who have been widowed or divorced.
      2. I can see no guarantee that the 2016 state pension will be uprated in the same way as the current state pension (RPI)
      3. There is no guarantee that those taking the new 2016 state pension will receive benefits such as winter fuel allowance and bus passes. It will be highly unfair if, in addition to having our state pension age raised twice and our flat rate pension reduced, we lose further benefits enjoyed by people who are just a couple of years older than us.

      Furthermore no account whatsoever seems to have been taken of the past different circumstances and inequalities that affected the earnings and pension opportunities of women in this age group.

      I estimate that the latest state pension age increase (mine is by 18 months) will see me at short notice lose around £10,000 of previously- promised pension. The reduction in the ‘flat rate pension’ will cost me around £1300 per year. Assuming I live to 85, that is a loss of £24,700 in today’s terms. I feel that I am being disproportionally targeted in the budget deficit reduction exercise.

      I would advise anyone born 1953 to 1955 to get a state pension forecast quickly to find out where you stand.

  2. Steve Webb never has and never will discuss the detrimental effect the present Coalition Governments changes to state pension age has made to the UK population now approaching the age when they should have been receiving their state pension.
    In a Coalition agreement in 2012 the Tories and Lib Democrats said that changes in the retirement age for women would not take place until 2020. They have since broken that agreement and have introduced the changes much sooner affecting 33,000 women. I myself was born in 1954 and after working since age 15 should have received my state pension this year at age 60. Now I won’t receive it until I am 65 years and 4 months old. These changes have been brought in so quickly there has been no time to plan for the future. These changes affect men as well as women. The Government stated the changes were necessary due to an ageing population.
    Interestingly in a House of Commons standard note dated 16th December 2013 that is freely available to view on the internet it states that that “Members (MPs) within 10 years of retirement age on 1st April 2012 can be assured that there will be no detriment to their retirement income”. In other words they will not be affected by these changes.
    There we have it, while the present Government have made changes to our pensions that seriously affect our quality of life they have protected themselves. It’s a scandal that the voting population of the UK should be made aware of. Take action and lobby you MP to demand that they look at this situation as a matter of urgency.

  3. Taxation of Pensions Bill…what effect does that have when the Coalition Government has already robbed me and thousands of women of my age of their state pension. I started work at 15 and still working at 60 because both the labour government and coalition government decided to punish the same women of a certain age twice…hang your heads in shame…I should be well retired now along with thousands of women of my age who have paid in to the system from 15 years of age so by the time I get my very hard earned state pension I will have paid into the NI system for 50 years and 6 months when actually the qualifying years in my working life was originally 39 years so I will have paid in an extra 25 years and 6 months for a state pension that I can’t get now until I am 65 and 6 months…how fair is that….in actual fact both governments are no better than common thieves.

  4. So there they were all in one place, the three men who stole another 18 months of state pension from me and people like me, common thieves indeed, yet they got away with it! What use is it to us to tell us that we may be able tap into personal pension savings when we never had the chance to join pension schemes? I started work in 1969 at 15 years old and I have worked all my life in low paid, menial jobs which attract no glory and no opportunity to save but nevertheless are vital to the running of this country and what reward do I get for this apart from varicose veins and osteoarthritis? I get robbed of another 18 months retirement on top of the 4 years I extra I had already been hit with in 1995, so instead of being able to retire at 60 I’m now looking at 65½, meaning I will have worked fifty years for the pension I have paid in for all these years and for which I had a contract with the government, assuming I live that long, and what really, really sickens me is that these men, and their cronies, all have protected pensions. I kept my side of the agreement but they didn’t keep theirs, they just s**t on us from a great height and when we objected they told us to lump it.

  5. I also started working from the age of 15. And I’m still working now I will be 60 in December . This is very unfair on women of my age as there were no private pension schemes years ago to join and by the time there was, I was a single mum bringing up children and could not afford to join a private pension scheme. However at that time I was still expecting to retire at 60 single women are the worst hit in this new state pension reform because we do not have a partner to share the burden we have no choice but to work in spite of some of us being in poor health this MUST be taken into consideration. There are many women who this affects who do not use social media but I know will not be voting this government in again. This is a cruel policy and must be reviewed urgently.

  6. I have ‘invested’ in my State Pension from the age of 16. I am now 61 and will not receive my hard earned SP until November 2017 two months after my 64th birthday. All my working life I have had manual jobs, one of the hardest, working with learning disabled people who have challenging behaviour. I have raised a daughter on my own, kept a roof over our heads and fed and clothed us. Through my life, I expected to be able to retire at 60, having enough contributions to do so. Instead, I have to struggle on. How is this fair? Why should I and others like me have to be in this situation? Where is it fair that I am taking a job to keep me solvent when younger people are desperate for work? Where is it fair that MP’s are allowed ridiculously high wage increases annually when families are unable to cope on the little income they have. Why not introduce a living wage instead of subsidising private companies, give people some respect? Why can’t these people see what they are doing to our society? or is it they don’t want to? I think the latter.
    ‘We’re all in this together’ – I think not, more like I’m all right Jack pull the ladder up. It is disgusting, they should be ashamed.

  7. I forgot to mention that there are petitions running on 38 degrees with more than 20.000 signatures protesting about the new SP reforms.

  8. I was born in September 1953 and have seen my pension age change from 60 to 62 to 63years and 5 months and finally to 64 years and 5 months. I was advised of the last change by letter from the DWP in January 2012, this being the only official notification to changes to my pension I have received. 533,000 women born after April 1953 have been affected by the unfair acceleration to state pension age which is in complete contrast to MP’s and judges who were given 10 years transitional protection in respect of their workplace pension. The government clearly recognises that people need to be given sufficient notice to any changes to the state pension as is highlighted in the white paper dated December 2013 – “Reviewing the State Pension Age” which states they “will seek to give individuals affected by changes to their State Pension Age at least 10 years notice. The government must surely reconsider and reverse the state pension law thereby allowing all those women to receive their state pension when they reach age 62 from next year onwards.

  9. As always, the injustice for women born in 1953/54 completely overlooked. Totally insignificant for David Cameron and the like. Absolutely devastating for those women affected.

  10. I have worked since the age of 16. I started as a gofer and worked my way up. I worked fulltime (no children) until the age of 56 when I was made redundant. I applied for hundreds of jobs without much luck, I think because of my age. During my working lifetime, I paid for my own dentristy, opticians, and the hospital admission (through my job and BUPA). When I was made redundant, I signed on for the first time and honestly declared I had savings (for when I retired) and was given 6 months Jobseekers Allowance. When this ended I still signed on but was told “go away, you have enough stamp for your pension”. My house has been sold (had a small mortgage), I am living in an area I don’t know as I bought the cheapest house I could find to put a roof over my head. My redundancy money is gone, and now I am living off my savings which will not last until I am 66. Can someone please explain where I went wrong. I paid thousands into a system, which has given nothing back. As I approach my 60th birthday, I try not to think about the future, as it is so bleak. I am not the only one, there are thousands of women like me. I will not give up. Shame on this Government for not making a fairer system, so that women (especially those born in 1953, 1954 & 1955) were not given a fairer tiered system, to enable them to cope with the change. Also I would like to know why the pension is now referred to as a “benefit”, it is NOT A BENEFIT when you have paid for 40 years. I look forward to receiving an answer.

  11. It is unreasonable to expect people born 53/54/55 to work even longer than originally expected…most of these women have worked since they were 15 years and had accepted that their pension age was increasing as per the first state pension age rise…but to have up to a FURTHER 18 months foisted on them at such short notice especially when the Tory manifesto clearly stated that the SPA for women would NOT increase further before 2020…this is a clear breach of an election promise and should NEVER have even been considered let alone put into law….there was NO mandate for this…and AGE UK should have vetoed it in the names of the 500000 women affected by it

  12. I was born im 1953 left school at easter friday and started work on the monday and worked up till i had my family, and still did some part time work, now im being pinalized for being born to late to get my state pension, i am 61 now and my husband passed away june 2014 and because he was pension age we had help, now i have to struggle on the pitance that im allowed to live on, who will employ me at 61? I have oseoperosis and other disabilites i am on widows pension and that is for just 1 year then i will have to sighn on the dole i will be nearly 62 i wont stand a chance . Please give us our pensions back .

  13. 533,000 women have been affected by the unfair acceleration to state retirement age. I have seen my pension change from 60 to 62 to 63 and 5 months and finally to 64 and 5 months. I was notified by the last change by letter from DWP and this is only notification of a change I have received. MP’s and judges were given transitional protection in respect of therir workplace pensions and there is also a white paper dated December 2013 – Reviewing State Retirement Pensions – which states “we will seek to give individuals affected by changes to their State Pension Age at least 10 years notice”. The governement must reconsider this unjust and unfair change to our pension age and allow the 533,000 women affected to receive their SRP at age 62.

  14. I was officially notified by DWP in 2012, (age 58) telling me I was not ‘entitled’ to my State Pension until 2020 (age 66), when I fully expected to qualify in 2014 (age 60) this came as a total shock to me, as I was given no prior notice of these brutal and accelerated changes and how they would affect me. I have since discovered that all people born 1953, 1954 and 1955 are the ones who are bearing the brunt of these unjust and unfair accelerated changes. People who have paid into the system in good faith since the 1960s with the promise of a state pension age 60. Our State Pension is not a ‘benefit’ it is something we have contributed to for 40+ years. Because of these manic and ill thought out changes, we are no longer afforded a ‘choice’, the people affected by these changes are being forced to continue working, irrespective of health and fitness issues. We should be allowed to retire when promised age 60. Free up jobs for the young, that was always the natural order of things, not people in their 60s competing with youngsters for the few jobs that are available. I can think of no other group of people, who could be so badly treated by any government, and there not be a public outcry. Surely no one thinks, that these barbaric accelerated changes to State Pension age can be fair or reasonable. Age UK are a disgrace, you have betrayed all of us.

  15. We will not give up on this, we kept our side of the bargain by working and contributing into the system, only to be betrayed and swindled out of our state pension with little or no time to make alternative financial arrangements for our most active of senior years. We are being punished for the mistakes and ill judgements of this and previous governments. We planned for our retirement, as promised age 60. Some of the people affected by these unjust and unfair accelerated changes to the state pension age, have only heard about it from other people. They have not even been afforded the courtesy of official notification. We have a petition on 38 Degrees. It is our aim to inform as many people as possible of the barbaric way in which our government is being allowed to treat it’s seniors. We have been ignored by Age UK. It would appear they have become very selective in who they choose to support, usually people who don’t need it.
    Please will you show your support for the thousands affected by the brutal and accelerated changes to the state pension age? If you are willing to support us please sign this petition.
    Thank you

  16. It still needs to brought into the public domain that MP’s while voting for these changes to the pension age they voted to make themselves exempt from the changes, they are protected from any increase in their pension age. Have a look at the website and check this out for yourselves, it’s easy to find. They don’t care about us, only themselves.

  17. I also have had the goal post moved for a pension I left school aged 14 and started working on my 15th birthday, and now not of good health. Where is the sence in this I have a gran daughter who was told she was so clever
    she could be what ever she wanted to be and even with qualifications no job to be had. But yet trying to keep older people slogging away. All in it together are we I don’t think so.

  18. Government claims that people are living longer. Not true in all cases many people may die before they can be allowed to claim SP at 66.
    What are they expected to do if they are in ill health before they are 66, claim job seekers ? Then what with all the sanctions if they can’t get to an appointment and they are sanctioned how many old people will there be homeless Hungry and desperate. For many the SP at least gives them dignity of which they are well deserved after paying into the system for so long. For goodness sake have a heart and let them retire at 60 they deserve it.

  19. I have also worked since I was 15 years old I should have retired in November this year .Ive had no notification of what date will retire on.Im on a 6month contract at work which if I’m lucky will continue to be renewed, but if it’s not who is going to employ a 60 year old women with no qualifications. So I will go on JSA for a few months, what then? I won’t be able to claim anything because I’m married and I shouldn’t have to go cap in hand to beg for money when I’ve paid into a system all my life only to have it stolen from me without any explanation .and what a complete waste of resources to start sending people of our age on training courses. For God sake give us the pension we’ve earned and give the kids of this country a chance of building a life for themselves. I certainly won’t be voting for this government.

  20. I am one of the women born 51 to 53 ,April 3rd 53 will be 63 and not in the for me and many other women the £155pw single tier pension, the 80 000 women last year born 6 April to July 53 railroaded our larger 700 000 in number campaign group to get in the better single tier, so they are alright. We women older by perhaps a second will not get the better pension and also will have lost the pension we would have had at age 60 which is around £16-£20 000 and then we get the pittance pension of around £130 whilst the 80 000 who are at an unequal spa age of men and still 63 get the around £155pw for life with of course the higher uprating.
    Dave C is a disgrace saying in his speech to age uk ‘the hard working shoud get benefit as of right and not apply that to us, it has and is just a stitch up since day one. We were never even told of our pension wait form 60 to up to 63 years and then this insult

  21. That man has robbed honest hard working people of their pension. He misled the electorate before the last election by promising not to raise the SPA before 2020. He promised that women would not be hit with a second increase. The pension reforms are cruel based on statistics that are deeply flawed. No we are not all living longer, they know there are vast social and regional differences, but why let truth and honesty get in the way of saving money.

  22. The distress and anger of the people affected will cost Cameron and Clegg deeply at the next election, they will get no votes from them or their friends and family. They rushed the second age rise through and outvoted Labour who could see how unfair it was, on women especially, the hardest hit having 18 months more to work on top of the first age rise which not many knew about anyway because they were not notified of it. How can the government ignore the plight of the people over 60, some struggling with age related complaints, to keep their jobs. Some existing on JSA and hounded to find a job which doesn’t exist, some sick and terrified their sickness benefit will be taken away. Single women and widows with no support worrying how they will cope to the later state pension age. It’s not only unfair, it’s cruel! A 60 year old now having worked 45 years already, having worked from 15 years old and in the days when there were long working hours and smaller wages for women. Having paid in contributions and deserving their well earned state pension, but there is still no end in sight for them, the goalposts have been moved twice. Meanwhile young people can’t get a start in their working life, their future is very bleak too. Surely older people being able to retire frees up jobs for young people. Let those who want to work longer, who are fit enough to do so, keep on working, although I personally think that is very selfish, blocking jobs! But let those who want a bit of freedom from work have it and have the state pension they have well earned, to live on. The government should reverse that last age rise now and Age UK should be fighting to make them do so. Age UK will lose by not continuing to help us because there will be no more financial contributions from the people who used to give but are now very disappointed that Age UK welcomed the miserable 6 months concession instead of saying it was not enough. I’m 67 years old, retired at 60, a young person has had a job since then and that’s the way it always worked out!

    1. That says it sll Ruth. Age Uk do not represent all older people. Only those born before 1953. I too can no longer support their cause. To say we have been let down is an understatement

  23. I was there. We had five groups each of which could put a question. The first question asked the PM to consider the plight of those caught in this horrific pension trap. As always, his answer was conciliatory but avoided promising any change. I was able to question him on the Government’s decision to allow the full cash commutation of pension funds. I asked him to consider allowing those already retired to have their pensions ‘bought back’ so they can enjoy the same freedom to draw down from an invested fund controlled by themselves. I am grateful for the personal stories you have written here. When active volunteers like myself engage with ministers and discuss the reforms that are needed, clear personal stories are much more effective than pure rhetoric. They can be put across with emotion.

    1. Ruth what about the women who had no chance to save for a private pension, they are forced to work because they have nothing else to live on and they are the women in hard physical work which never paid much money and has taken a toll on their health. Was no one there to speak for them? My own 60 year old sister has osteo arthritis, how can she be expected to work to 65 and 1/2? Yet she has no choice, she is a widow with no other income, she missed out on widows pension, it was stopped 2 years before! Why should she be grudgingly handed benefits to live on if she loses her job or becomes to ill to work, benefits which wouldn’t be enough to live on anyway. She should be receiving the state pension she has worked and contributed for, for 45 years so far. Is there anyone who cares about the women like her, do you know?

  24. Yes Age UK says it’s here to help older people face the challenges in their lives, well this is a huge challenge to people like me and my friends in our protest group, this challenge has us lying awake at night worrying about our futures and what will happen to us if we lose our jobs or can’t physically manage them until our late sixties, and don’t tell me there are benefits to support us, we all know that every benefit is begrudged and only paid out at the minimum amount for the minimum time, and suddenly the state pension is also classed as a “benefit”, yet we have paid in towards it all our working lives. I wish there was an organisation that cared about older people and fought for their rights, oh wait a minute there is…Age UK! I don’t think so.

  25. We completely understand your frustration with what is, as you quite rightly say, an unfair situation for those of you who fall into this age group.

    It’s equally frustrating for us that there seems to be no opportunity for us to make a difference as the government shows no intention of changing its position.

    At Age UK we can only engage in a limited number of campaigns at once and we consider extremely carefully which are likely to effect the best change for the most older people.

    Unfortunately, as the Government has recently considered this issue, and has delivered other pensions legislation, we are not campaigning on this issue, but have instead raised it with decision makers through our policy and public affairs work.

    We’re sorry to not be able to be of more help to you.

    1. Unacceptable Age UK, organisations such as yours should have continued the campaign even though the bill has been passed. We just can’t let the government get away with this, we have to keep voicing the absolute injustice for all women who have had their retirement pension stolen or ask the government that those such women who now have to continue working are now exempt from paying more NI contributions until they reach their new pension age, after all we have already paid in well over the qualifying period. It’s appallingly shameful

  26. Thanks very much AGE UK for precisely doing nothing to help us. Who exactly do you help ? because I think calling yourself AGE UK is misleading your not helping any of us that’s for sure. I do hope the government realise that it is our age group 60+ who are likely to turn out on polling day and I do hope that they realise how many voters they will loose. How many of us has this affected ?. That, you will find out on polling day Mr Cameron.

  27. I honestly do not now what to make of these organisations. I am one of the women born 52-5.4.53 group now due to govt shenanigans changed to women born 6.4.51 to 5.4.53 numbers of us will be close to 63 and still not get the better £155 single tier , despite a wait of up to 3 years and 3 years pension loss and then the poorest pension for life if we are lucky to be £131 many of the women above if I have read correctly the age profile post 6.4.53 will get the better single tier and as also said 80 000 will be only a few second/months older.All of us women would be in a better position if the govt did the just and right thing and Age UK would fight for us. Age UK was 2 groups that came together if I was part of their organisation I would speak up CEO level and tell gov it is intolerable and unacceptable and repeat and repeat it and highlight it continually in articles press and tv however that is not what they do.
    Dave C is allowed to talk drivel and insult us 700000 women born 51-53 hundreds of thousands of us still not getting cont SP, saying we deserve dignity in old age and not to have to sign up for benefits however the legislation does exactly the opposite, to the poorest pensioner group women, Women also need not to forget Steve Webb’s part the architect
    of our pittance pension and loss. Obviously these organisation seem to be complicit with this injustice or at the very least content about it. Ruth we too have an action and are active group how did you get an invite? We heard nothing I guess we are not invited as we would have to show and tell the truth and show up the government for the unjust untruthful shower it really is. Lucky you are in a pension fund situation ?as RAF engineer we are poorer than that jobs such as shops cleaning low admin: some women’s lot We 7000 000 women will have to scrap by with no other pension than the worse one and have the insult of
    years wait and loss and no significant action from the organisation that could if they wanted to help

  28. We knew nothing of this visit until after it was over, it would have been nice if representatives from our 2 protest groups had been invited. We formed and have campaigned since we first heard in 2010 of the proposed accelerated state pension age rise and our groups must surely be well known to Age UK. The government have treated the people affected shamefully, by rushing through the law in 2011 and IDS announced the ‘ 6 months concession’ just before they voted the age rise through so we had no time to tell them it was not enough. They said it was costing them to do that and tried to make it sound like a big favour, well it’s costing the people over 60 affected who are working, to suffer from the loss of more of their state pension and freedom and to have to keep on paying in contributions too. It’s costing the unemployed over 60s great distress at having to live on JSA with no chance of a job. It’s costing the sick over 60s stress that their sickness benefit will be taken from them. ALL of these people should not have this distress, it was bad enough but the last accelerated age rise was cruel. We thought Age UK could have legally challenged the unfair and discriminatory way that was planned out, eg a woman born April 1954 going from 60 to 64 to 65 and 1/2 while women born slightly earlier had less extra added on and women born slightly later had more. It’s as if the government just took a pin and targeted the women to suffer for the crime of being born 1953/54/55 without giving a thought to the devastation it would cause them. The government just don’t care, they are sitting pretty with private pension pots, they can retire early and enjoy some freedom from work and stress before they are too old. How can any government be so unfair!! We need an answer from Labour, will they reverse the last age rise WHEN (as they MUST or all ordinary people are doomed) they get into power in May 2015. Age UK will you ask them for us please, we can’t get a straight reply. They must still have their fairer timetable, they voted to keep that but the ConDems outvoted them, there is no reason why they can’t go back to it……Age UK you CAN help us by getting a straight answer from Ed Miliband for us.

  29. I see from all the previous comments that many feel like me, that Age UK did/said nothing to support those of us who have unfairly had they pension rights delayed for a second time, for a further 4 years and without due notice. I do not feel Age UK represent the interests of the ageing population when they do not make good challenges about this second default, when opportunities to speak and be heard are served on a silver platter.
    Please sign and share the petition

  30. Something else has come up today, Brussels are wanting a huge sum of money for the EU because our economy is doing so well. If that’s true then the government DO have enough money to pay people their state pensions at the age promised, they just don’t want to. Also another excuse for putting the state pension age up was that all EU countries had to be equal….so how come people in France, a country which will be receiving a huge sum from Brussels because their economy is poor, people can retire at 62? Can anyone at Age UK explain to us please why our hard working people are the scapegoats for the EU?

  31. I belong to the active group of women born 6.Apr 51 to 5 Apr 53, we have had a wait of an extra 1to 3years so up to age 63 for thousands, and hundreds of thousands of us for some equalising and then we will not get the better PM’s”New’Single Tier State Pension” North of £148 ;(in fact at least £155 due to being set above Pension Credit” and PM’S ”who’ve saved do deserve dignity, not having to sign up for extra benefits; they should get them as of right. No,Dave we women are being cheated by you and Osborne and Webb:we get the £113/5pw possibly with serps/s2p around £127 to £130pw and at age of up to 63 to make up to the £155women at 6,4,53 will get we would if we had the money and physical energy neither which we have to defer for over a year and half till
    age 64 and half +.So being older than the women younger than us the Apr -Jul+ 1953 women. So regardless we have had the contributory pension wait/equalisation/pension loss up to £18-£20 000 already and then we do not even get the north of =£155 better state pension, and just to give us further twist of the screw we ‘could’ ‘payout/get a loan of £9,000 or so at 63 I do not think so, nor the extra class 3A NI’s Steve Webb suggests we buy for around £23 000 to give us this extra £25-£28 each week we will not get which the 6.4.53 women get andof course all men from date of birth April 1951. We signed up for 39 years of NI many of us will have 44 years, we put up with the extra years equalisation, we put up with the pension loss £18-20 000 loss, we did not sign up to be in total pensioner poverty which is comical that almost on the same day Dave said what he did ‘not to sign up have of right/ Age UK announced the 1.6 million in pensioner poverty and for them to sign up. Age UK knows that over a third of persons do not sign up, why it is undignified to be signing up to your grave.
    Please do correct me if I am wrong on my figures/facts and please advise as to why our group who have been in contact with you our spokesperson
    was not contacted to attend the meeting. It seems very odd indeed , by the look of the pictures of event the invitees looked(sorry no offence anyone)
    well into receipt of their pension: so older than the 1951 onward women,
    I am aware that a number of the senior staff at Age Uk are women and again it is beyond odd that they are not saying repeatedly that as Dave said about his EU bill(no doubt ours too) ” It is unacceptable and appalling’
    and telling them till Dave and pals rectify this injustice that it is totally
    wrong. Thank you

  32. Well said Ruth, this Government seems to be able to find money for all sorts of things i.e. HS2 and now HS3 (£7bn) and bailing out the banks, but when it comes to giving back to the people who have paid in, they squeal that there is no money, not what the EU thinks and now Ros Altmann is agreeing that the system of not paying pensions to the women born in the early 50’s is highly unfair.

  33. I want my State Pension now after all it is my money. I have a ration book!!!! Yes rationing was still in place in 1954. My mother died at 60, three uncles died at 60, my aunt died at 60. I am 60. I am tired. I have brought my son up alone after divorce with no help from the state. I have not been able to save a lot as maintenance of my home always eats up the savings. Hardly any holidays. No visits to the hairdresser. No treats. And yet I am surrounded by people who do not work and get their rent paid by the Government. That rent per month is more than my monthly pension would be. I work with 7 colleagues who are just that bit older than myself and they get their pension and their wage. I feel alienated and resent going to work when those who live around me don’t. Why can’t our jobs be passed on to that generation who live off the state. David Camerons mother will get her heating allowance, millionaires get their heating allowance and yet for two years I did not have a fire in my room as I could not afford one and just as I was thinking I could be warm in the Winter, that benefit has been taken away.. Bus passes!! also. What next? When I die it will be carved on my gravestone that my pension was stolen, theft is a crime, this situation is a crime. All those things I wanted to do when I stopped work, will I ever have that choice?

  34. I have worked full time from the age of 16. I have never received maternity pay, paternity pay or any other benefit, and I have always paid the large contribution ( as it was known then) when I was pregnant in 1974 I had to give up my job. Following the birth of my child I found another job and paid private nursery fees, there was no family allowance for a first child.
    My husband died when I was 50. I received one years widow pension and because I was under 55 I was only entitled to 65 percent!!!.
    When I enquired about the ni contributions he had paid for almost 35 years i was told “Someone would benefit from them!!!
    My first pension forecast told me I would be 64 when I received my pension, my next letter tells me I will be 5 months short of my 67th birthday.
    My mother died when she was 61.
    Most of my friends are 60 the same age as me, we are all stressed and worried and finding the modern workplace so difficult. The employers don’t want us there And we don’t want to be there. We are clogging up the workplace.

  35. Oh! When I googled this, I didn’t realise it was another AgeUK thing. Wasting my time. So many are affected by this criminal action, but AgeUK sit by and do nothing.

  36. When I go to vote in May, if someone held a gun to my head & said you must vote conservative I would just say shoot me, they have destroyed our lives, I was widowed suddenly at 57, I got widows benefit for a year, even though emotionally I was far from ready I spent the next 2 years trying to find a job, last month I got a cleaning job for 10 hours a week, I have taken it as it’s better than nothing but I am nearly 61 now & really struggling physically, but I just do not have a choice thanks to DC & his lying cronies, they are beyond contempt. I too would like to say also that I too will not be supporting age UK ever again as they have completely let all women born between 53/55 down.

  37. When is any government going to realise that they need to give pensioners a liveable rate of pension. I would like to see any MP, Labour, Conservative, Independent or whoever, live on a state pension. They are all set for life, they already earn excess of what I have earned over a lifetime in one year.

    When they give us a pension that will not only pay a reasonable income, so that we don’t have to scrimp just to get our weekly food, then I think that party will be worth voting for. I do vote, but I would change my vote tomorrow for the party that would raise pensions to a liveable one. I don’t see this happening while they are sitting in such comfort though, do you?

  38. 1. The state pension was originally a safety net to help those living longer than the norm. when they could not work. It was never intended to provide anyone with a “comfortable retirement” – for that one has always had to provide via company or personal schemes.
    2. Some people have complained that they thought till now that they would get their state pension at 60 – really? What planet do they live on when it is 20 years since the first changes were made?
    3. And the woman saying she now has to work to past 66 when she was in the wave of people told it would be 64- please check that – mine went straight to 65 and then 66 and, as I understand it, no one who has had that happen will then reach state pension age later than 66th birthday.
    4. Greece, France etc. cannot afford their state pensions, they have governments which were not prepared to face the facts like ours has. Greece has had to cut pensions already in payment. There are many other areas where governments, of all colours, have always taken short term views for electoral popularity – we should be grateful they have bitten the bullet on this one.

  39. I do hope all the women who’ve posted on here know about the campaign called WASPI which stands for women against state pension inequality. It only started in 2015 and the government petition only started 10 days ago and has over 24,000 signatures already. WASPI is urging everyone to see their MP which is what we are all doing, letters to MPs are a waste of time. WASPI have had a lot of media coverage on radio and in local/national newspapers and have a growing list of MPs supporting us. We have been so unfairly treated, and whilst its true women wanted equality, let’s face it we’ve generally earned far less than men over the years. Dr Ros Altmann (now Baroness) in one of her many articles said women earned 30% less than men in the 1980s! What about 1969 when I left school, I bet it was 40 or even 50% then, and as she said, women weren’t allowed to join company pension schemes if they worked part time. So please look at the WASPI site and help fight the injustice we’ve all suffered. MPs have 10 years protection against changes to their occupational pensions so why were we denied the same kind of state pension notice? Thousands of us uniting like this we can fight the injustice done. I hope AGE UK support us like SAGA

  40. I have just gone sixty and i am disgusted and angry how the new 60 year olds are left high and dry with no state pension until they are 66 its not a free hand out after all the state pension has been deducted for years from our wages so with virtually no notice at all the goverment decide to take our hard earned money and use it where they see fit and not that it really dosent belong anywhere else as its not theirs…not forgetting a lot of private pensions that people have paid into for year is now not worth the paper its written on either aa promised to so many people ..something needs to be done here we need a voice that we can unite with and stand together we should be compensated for little warning to evening save and so leaving thousands of older people in a poor abandoned state shame on the governent for treating ill of the people thats worked hard all their suck.

  41. We women need a voice and. Some help help . 15 years old we. Started. Work not college.reform to make men women the same rubbish. I was born sep1954 husband born March 1954. He gets pension may 2019. Mine July 2020 well is that fair system .people in parlimenent 10years protection with their pensions . Let women have the same rights.

  42. Helen A People are complaining because they never had any official word of changes to state pension not the 1995 change nor the 2011 even I should be retiring next June (no letter from either government or DWP) to say otherwise so are you saying that its fair for MPs to have their state pension protected and us not?. The government and DWP insists that people were informed so surely they would have copies of letters sent out. I found out by chance online so they must think we re all clairvoyants to know of changes made to pensions to this day I have never received a letter from them.

  43. MPs state pension is subject to exactly the same rules as everyone else.
    Their occupational pension, to which they contribute, has been scaled back from previous rules.
    Does no-one on here read the newspapers, watch the news or listen to the radio? – Was not good news when the dates went up twice – announced in Chancellors’ budgets- but was not a state secret ! Everyone was talking about the first leap to 65 – and most of us about further rise to 66 and 67 Cannot recall whether I received any specific notification other than when asking for my state pension quotation but I already knew the date – general knowledge !

    Do you think that it was (is at the moment) fair that men received their state pension for about 8 years less than women because they receive it later and die earlier?

    Obviously, transitional arrangements throw up anomalies, but that is the nature of change.

  44. I like many others was born December 1953 making my retirement date March 2019. My sister born October 1952 received her pension last year, if I was born six months earlier I would be receiving my pension this summer. I will have worked for 51 years. My husband received his at 65 3 years ago. We had plans to travel round europe him at 65 myself at 60. The government has now left us doing this at myself 65 1/2 and my husband 72. Thank you government. Most MP’s are able to retire at 55 year. We have received a rise of 1 % in 5 years MP’s have received about 20% in two years. I hope they all are able to sleep at night.

    I will never vote Conservative or Labour again they have robbed us of our pensions and put it into their own pockets.

    1. Linda – I don’t know why you had those plans if made after 1995 when your pension age first went up from 60. That was 20 years ago and was not a state secret but plastered all over papers, TV & radio when announced in the budget.
      At least you are blaming Lab & Con – but all other parties agree anyway (well possibly not the SWP)

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