Tory MP Says Government 'Should Be Ashamed' Over Treatment Of WASPIs

"A lot of women have suffered over a long period of time," Tim Loughton said.
Women from the WASPI (Women Against State Pension Inequality) campaign
Women from the WASPI (Women Against State Pension Inequality) campaign
Mark Kerrison via Getty Images

A Conservative MP has criticised the government over its handling of the group known as the WASPIs, saying it “should be ashamed”.

Backbencher Tim Loughton called for action after a major report – released last week – found the government should compensate those women impacted by changes to the state pension age.

He told Times Radio “a lot of women” in the Waspi group – Women Against State Pension Inequality – have suffered” due to this incident.

The Waspi campaign is made up of women born in the 1950s who were impacted by increases to their state pension age (from 60 to 65) so it was equal with men’s.

The change happened between 2010 and 2018. Many say they were not adequately informed about the shift, and so ended up losing out on several years of their state pension.

According to Waspi, more than a quarter of a million women have died since the campaign began.

Loughton said: “A lot of women have suffered over a long period of time, and many of them have died in quite tragic circumstances, which is why we need recognition for what they’ve gone through.”

“I think they [the Department for Work and Pensions] should be ashamed. The government has got to take note,” the Tory MP – who used to co-chair an All-Party Parliamentary group on the issue – said.

“The Ombudsman clearly found the DWP were guilty of maladministration, that they’ve not properly communicated these changes with a great number of women.”

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman published its second report into the issue on Thursday, and found those affected were not adequately informed – and therefore need an apology and payouts.

But during Sunday morning media rounds, neither the Conservatives nor Labour committed to compensating those impacted.

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt said the issue was “genuinely more complicated” than other schemes were compensation was now being handed out, adding: “There’s no secret vault of money.”

Labour Party chair Anneliese Dodds said, “those women deserve respect, that’s the most important [thing],” but did not make any promises.


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