A new online forum has been launched for ‘50s-born women affected by state pension changes in the Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath area.
The Facebook group ‘WASPI Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath – Women Against State Pension Injustice’ is actively looking for members and link them together.
It was established after Lesley Laird MP held two awareness-raising events in the constituency this summer.
Hundreds of women, who found their pension age suddenly raised from 60 to 65/66 years, attended the Kirkcaldy and Lochgelly events to listen to national campaigners.
Lesley said: “Despite the fact that over 5,500 women in the constituency were affected by the pension changes here, they didn’t have a collective voice.
“I’m delighted to have played a part in helping to rectify that situation by setting up this facebook page with a view to a campaign group developing from there, led by local women.
“I would urge affected women to join the facebook group now to ensure our message can be heard loud and clear.”
Earlier this month, the Backto60 campaign – which argued the pension changes were unlawful – suffered a setback after it lost a judicial review at the High Court.
Permission for an appeal has now been lodged but a date for the appeal has yet to be announced.
Meanwhile, WASPI campaigners were out in force on a visit to the UK Parliament last week to keep up pressure on MPs and the UK Government.
Lesley, who met the campaigners, said: “I was delighted to attend this event and to once again show solidarity with this campaign.
“The fact remains that countless women were penalised by the UK Government’s decision, many of them who had worked all their days, cared for children and grandparents, and were preparing for retirement.
“We heard horror stories of women who, unable to find a job, had to sell their house, beg their parents for money and suffer acute mental and physical ill-health.
“It’s appalling what some have endured, all because the government picked an arbitrary number and hiked up the age of eligibility without any transitional plan for those affected.
“That’s the whole point – these women were treated as numbers, nothing more.”
The MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath has planned another WASPI event, which is due to take place at the Adam Smith Centre in Kirkcaldy on November 23rd between 10.30am and 12.30pm.
Advice for those who wished to lodge a complaint with the DWP – but can no longer do so due to recent changes – will be available, as well as the latest news on the campaign.
To register an interest in attending, or to be kept up to date, please email email@example.com
To join the local campaign group search for WASPI Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath – Women Against State Pension Injustice on facebook or go direct to https://www.facebook.com/groups/2398482923812621
Pic (l-r): Audrey Cunningham (CARF), Lesley Laird MP, Rosemary Dickson (Waspi Scotland campaigner)