Thousands of Welwyn Hatfield women affected by pension court ruling

PUBLISHED: 06:58 08 October 2019 | UPDATED: 10:37 08 October 2019

It is estimated 4,000 people in Welwyn Hatfield have been affected by the changes. Picture: Pexels.

It is estimated 4,000 people in Welwyn Hatfield have been affected by the changes. Picture: Pexels.

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Thousands of women from Welwyn Hatfield have been affected by the court ruling on pensions.

On Thursday last week, the High Court ruled that the government's pensions plan - which moved women's retirement start date from 60 to 65 from 2010 - was lawful.

Under the 1995 and 2011 Pension Act, the retirement age will go up further by 66 in 2020, and to 67 by 2028.

The Department for Work and Pensions - who the case was against - welcomed the court's ruling that changes to female retirement were not sexist and were lawful.

Labour-proposed Welwyn Hatfield prospective parliamentary candidate Rosie Newbigging called it a "crushing blow" to women from the 1950s and said the government was "stealing of thousands of pounds of state pension".

She said the Welwyn Hatfield women that she spoke to, during the course of the campaign, would lose nearly £50,000 as a result of the changes.

"One woman told me that her income is so low that she can not afford to heat her home this winter even though she has chronic lung disease," said Ms Newbigging.

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"This is a disgrace and I have pledged my full support to the thousands of women in Welwyn Hatfield who have had their pensions stolen. The campaign will continue until justice is done.

"We will right this wrong."

Two women that were affected by the government's changes - Julie Delve, 61, and Karen Glynn, 63, brought the case.

They were particularly affected as they were born after April 6, 1953 - which means their retirement age jumped to five years more.

Michael Mansfield QC, representing the women affected, said disadvantaged woman had been pushed "into the lowest class you can imagine".

"They're on the brink of survival, and I'm not overstating that," Mr Mansfield said.

"This group - especially the percentage of the group affected born in 1953 onwards - are increasingly having taken away from them four to six years' worth of state pension.

"We're dealing with very serious sums - £37,000 to £47,000. I think any citizen would be concerned by that withdrawal."

The government plans to increase state pension age to 68 between 2044 and 2046, but could bring this forward to between 2037 and 2039.

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