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A JUDGEMENT from the Court of Appeal today over the raising of the state pension age for women born in the 1950s was described as “nothing short of a disaster.”
Nearly four million women have been affected by reforms introduced by successive governments to ensure “pension age equalisation,” which have raised the state pension age for this group from 60 to 66.
The court ruled that the reforms were not discriminatory.
Unison assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said: “For a generation of women, this is nothing short of a disaster.
“Raising the state pension age with next to no notice has had a calamitous effect on their retirement plans.
“Those on lower incomes have been left in dire straits, struggling to make ends meet with precious little support from the government.
“It’s now time MPs intervened to give them the financial help many so desperately need.”
The women affected by controversial changes to the state pension age said they are “actively looking” to escalate their case to the Supreme Court.
Julie Delve, 62, and Karen Glynn, 63 – supported by campaign group BackTo60 – had brought an appeal after losing a landmark High Court fight against the Department for Work and Pensions last year.
Ms Delve expected to receive her state pension at age 60 in 2018, but as a result of the changes, she will not receive it until she is 66, in 2024. Ms Glynn expected to receive her state pension at age 60 in 2016, but will not receive it until she is 66 in 2022.
The women argued that raising their pension age unlawfully discriminated against them on the grounds of age and sex, and that they were not given adequate notice of the changes.
But appeal judges Master of the Rolls Sir Terence Etherton, Lord Justice Underhill and Lady Justice Rose unanimously dismissed the claim.
They found that introducing the same state pension age for men and women did not amount to unlawful discrimination under EU or human rights laws.
A DWP spokesperson welcomed the ruling, adding: “Raising state pension age in line with life expectancy changes has been the policy of successive administrations over many years.”
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