Victory for Havant women in state pension age battle

WOMEN campaigning against '˜unfair' changes to pensions won a promise from councillors to take their cause to government.

Wednesday, 7th December 2016, 9:04 pm
Updated Wednesday, 14th December 2016, 1:58 pm
Carolyne Jacobs, Jeanette Smith, Elaine Davenport and Stephanie Lafferty from Solent Waspis at Havant Borough Council

Members of Solent Waspi – Women Against State Pension Inequality – attended Havant’s full council last night.

Elaine Davenport, 62, from Cowplain, urged councillors to support a motion calling for them to ask government to make fair transitional changes to the state pension age (SPA) for women born on or after April 6, 1951.

The group says changes to equalise retirement ages between men and women have meant thousands are losing out.

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Elaine told councillors it affected 8,000 in Havant. She expected to get her pension in 2014, aged 60. But changes, accelerated since passed in 1995, mean she has to be 65.

‘I thought when I started paying I was entering into a contract to provide dignity in my older age,’ she told councillors.

‘It’s a contract I fulfilled by spending into the system but one that the state has reneged on.’

The motion, proposed by Cllr David Keast, was voted through despite two abstentions and one vote against. Abstaining, Cllr Leah Turner said: ‘I don’t make central government policies.’