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Government Refuses Compensation for Women Affected by State Pension Age Changes, Ombudsman Calls for Parliamentary Intervention

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The long-awaited official report from the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) has revealed that thousands of women, potentially hundreds of thousands, are owed compensation due to government failings related to changes in the state pension age enactment.

The PHSO recommended payouts of between £1,000 and £2,950 per person, but this fell short of the £10,000-plus that campaigners were advocating for the affected women.

Despite the potential multi-billion-pound bill if all women born in the 1950s were to be compensated, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has indicated it will not comply with the compensation recommendation prompting the ombudsman to call for parliamentary intervention.

Campaigners, such as the Women Against State Pension Inequality (Waspi) group, have been pushing for justice for the women who had their retirement plans thrown into disarray when the state pension age was raised from 60 to 65 and then to 66.

The report highlighted that the DWP’s failure to adequately inform women about the changes to the state pension age had led to significant financial and emotional distress for many affected individuals.

Angela Madden, Chair of Waspi, expressed frustration over the DWP’s refusal to accept the findings of the investigation and called for a clear commitment to compensation from all political parties.

The ombudsman report mentioned various case studies, including ‘Ms U‘, who suffered financial losses and emotional stress after discovering the increase in her state pension age by six years.

Parliament now faces the responsibility of delivering justice to the 3.6 million women affected by the state pension age change, with calls for a proper compensation package to be established without further delay.

Key figures in this ongoing issue, such as Rebecca Hilsenrath, Peter Aldous from the APPG, and Wendy Chamberlain from the Liberal Democrats, have echoed the urgency for compensation to be provided to the affected women swiftly.

Rachel Adams

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