Weir meets demonstration

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Angus MP Mike Weir met women from Angus and other parts of Scotland taking part in the Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI) demonstration outside the Houses of Parliament yesterday.

The demonstration was to demand the UK government investigates transitional measures for 1950s-born women impacted by rapid rises in the state pension age.

The SNP has repeatedly called for action from the UK government with Mhairi Black, the youngest MP in the House of Commons, leading a backbench business debate on the issue in January which received cross-party support.

Mr Weir commented: “This demonstration sends an important message to the UK government that women will not give up until they achieve justice for having their retirement plans shattered due to the rapid rises in the state pension age.

“The SNP agrees with pension equalisation but we cannot support the deeply unfair manner in which the changes were made – first in 1995 and exacerbated in 2011. It is morally reprehensible that many thousands of women will actually lose out financially as a result of changes that were deigned to make pensions more equal.

“A pension is a contract, not a benefit so we must have transitional arrangements for these 1950s-born women who have worked hard all their lives and have contributed to the UK economy.”

Ian Blackford MP, the SNP’s spokesperson for pensions, said: “With the outcome of last Thursday’s vote still sinking in, the nation’s attention has understandably been elsewhere.

“But it is now six months since Parliament voted unanimously to condemn the appalling way women born in the 1950s have been treated and we must have action now to address this.

“It is vital that the UK government respect the decision of this parliament and help those women affected who were born in the 1950’s and who should have had proper notice to plan their finances and their retirement.”