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MP urges government to move quickly on Waspi women compensation

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Stroud MP Siobhan Baillie has urged the government not to delay paying out compensation to Waspi women born in the 1950s who saw their retirement age rise by five years.

The Health Service Ombudsman ruled last week the women should receive compensation ranging from £1,000 to £2,950. 

The watchdog specifically looked at issues between 2005-2007 and the department failed to provide accurate, adequate and timely information about the pension changes.

Speaking in the House of Commons this week, Ms Baillie said: “WASPI women across my Stroud constituency have campaigned consistently and constructively. I have grown very fond of them as we have discussed the subject over the years. 

“As the secretary of state knows, at the heart of the issue are women saying that they were left unable to plan or that their plans for the future were scuppered, so the focus should be on laying out a timetable as soon as possible. 

“The issue of compensation is key to many of these women, who will have read the report. It is right that the Secretary of State and his Department look through the report in detail, but will he lay out a timetable, tell these women what is and is not possible, and manage their expectations as soon as possible, because they have waited?

In reply, the work and pensions secretary Mel Stride said: “My honourable friend is a member of the Work and Pensions Committee and I welcome her question. I reassure her that there will be no undue delay. 

“I thank her for recognising that we need to look at these matters with great care.”

Speaking afterwards, Ms Baillie said: “This is a serious issue that many women have experienced.  The report covers the department’s decisions during a Labour government but there have been issues since.  

“In any event, I want to see WASPI women across Stroud receive redress without more delay.  I welcome the secretary of state’s comments and I understand the report needs careful consideration given it took 5 years to create.  Parliament will need to move this forward swiftly though.”

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