Colofn: Cyfiawnder Pensiwn ar gyfer menywod a anwyd yn y 1950au

Sioned Williams AS yn ysgrifennu am y menywod gafodd eu geni yn y 1950au yn dal i frwydro am gyfiawnder pensiwn

A photograph of Sioned Williams standing with women fighting for pension justice. They are stood inside the Senedd building, with the familiar wood panelled centre structure behind them.

Cyhoeddwyd yr erthygl hon yn y South Wales Evening Post Dydd Iau 21 Mawrth 2024 (yn Saesneg).

What would you do if you were told the age at which you can retire had changed? Perhaps, if you’re at the start of your career, your retirement seems so far away, a few years here and there won’t make much of a difference. But if you’re at – what you believe to be – the end of your career, then you need fair warning.

So it seems incomprehensible that people could be in the situation where they’ve resigned or accepted redundancy from work, maybe for family reasons, thinking their state pension was about to kick in, only to find the goalposts had been moved.

Yet that’s the situation millions of women found themselves in following a 1995 Westminster decision to increase women’s state pension age. Women born in the 1950s were hit particularly hard by this – in fact a significant number of women were given as little as one year’s notice of up to a 6 year increase to their State Pension Age.

The ‘Women Against State Pension Inequality’ campaign (WASPI) reports that some women received no notification whatsoever, and some had already taken irreversible decisions in the expectation of retiring at 60 – such as redundancy or early retirement.

I had the privilege of meeting a group of such women from Wales (pictured), and they put me in touch with Janet from Pension Justice for Swansea Women, who told me that 15,000 women in the Swansea area have been affected. 

Janet explained to me that she had to wait 2 years and ten months before she was able to draw her state pension, but that she counts herself lucky that she was from a joint income household.

She told me:

“I am fighting for those women not as fortunate as I. Women who continue to have to work in often labour intensive jobs such as cleaning, caring or stacking shelves in supermarkets way beyond the age any of us expected to be needing to do so. Women who have had to sell their homes because they can no longer afford to maintain them, women who are sleeping in their cars or sofa surfing until the council can rehouse them! None of this should be the burden of women in their 60s who paid into a National Insurance scheme to look after them from cradle to grave.”

I support the WASPI calls on the Westminster Government to agree fair and fast compensation for all women affected by the lack of notice regarding the State Pension age increases to reflect their financial losses and the sustained damage to their mental health and well-being.

If you think you may have been affected get in touch with:

[email protected]

Mae hyn yn dechrau gyda chi

Ganddyn nhw mae'r arian, ond gennym ni mae'r bobl. Os yw pawb sy'n ymweld â'r wefan hon yn ymuno â'n symudiad yna does dim na allwn ei gyflawni.