WASPI woman discovered her state pension age change ‘on Facebook’

1950s-born woman hits out at Government during Westminster rally

The state pension age for women was traditionally 60, but was increased to 65 to align with men, and then both rose to 66. However, many women born in the 1950s argue they were not provided with ample notice of these changes and have suffered financially and emotionally as a result.

While some do not disagree with the rise to the state pension age, they debate the way in which this occurred.

One woman who argues she was impacted by these changes is Ann Deeming, a 70-year-old woman from Shropshire, and she discussed her story with Express.co.uk.

She said: “I found out [about the state pension age change] just before I was due to retire, when I read about it on Facebook.

“I had been working since the age of 16, and expected what I signed up for – a pension at 60.

“So, it was literally just beforehand that I found out, when some of my friends, who were a bit older than me, didn’t get theirs. I received no communication from the DWP on this.”

Ms Deeming explained because of ill health and other circumstances, she needed to retire at 60, but was frustrated by the fact she did not have a state pension to fall back on.

She added: “I had a work pension, which I hadn’t been in for very long, so I was able to claim that.

“But because I’d retired early, I ended up losing about 11 percent of it.”


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In addition to the state pension age change issue, Ms Deeming also expressed her anger concerning the two tier state pension system.

The older scheme known as the basic state pension is for those who reached state pension age before April 2016 – men born before April 6, 1951 and women born before April 6, 1953.

While the newer scheme is for men born on or after April 6, 1951 and women born on or after April 6, 1953.

Ms Deeming found she was eligible for the basic state pension, but feels she just missed out on higher payments.

She continued: “My argument with the whole thing is not having any information, but also I had to wait three and a half years longer.

“When I did get my pension, around February 2016, I only got the basic state pension. But if I were to have been born a few months later, I wouldn’t have had my pension for another few months and it would’ve been higher.

“It maddens me. I’ve lost out on three and a half years of pension, and then I’m over £40 a week less than someone who is only a couple of months younger than me. It’s thousands of pounds I’ve lost out on.

“Every time the pension goes up, that gap between old and new gets bigger. I know I’m not the only one, but it feels discriminatory.”

Ms Deeming described her circumstances as a “double whammy”, facing a state pension age change and “lower” payments when compared to her younger counterparts.

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She also touched upon the impact the state pension age change has had on her day-to-day life.

Ms Deeming added: “My husband had to support me for those three years I couldn’t work and I couldn’t get my state pension.

“It really affects me. I can’t afford to just go on holiday, every single bit of money is accounted for. I rarely go out, perhaps only to meet up with friends four or five times a year, and that’s the only time I’ll eat out.

“When you go into the shops, you strictly budget but everything’s just gone up so much – and I’m cooking from scratch. You expect you’ll be able to live in retirement. You’d never expect this.”

A Department for Work and Pensions spokesperson told Express.co.uk: “The Government decided over 25 years ago it was going to make the state pension age the same for men and women. Both the High Court and Court of Appeal have supported the actions of the DWP under successive governments dating back to 1995 and the Supreme Court refused the claimants permission to appeal.”

The DWP has said from April, the full annual amount of the basic state pension will be over £3,050 higher than in 2010, and the “vast majority” of those who receive it will also get additional income from either an occupational or private pension, the additional state pension, or a combination of the two.

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