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At least 1,000 women protest at changes to UK pension age

At least 1,000 of the 3.8 million women who have been forced to wait up to an extra six years to get their pensions marched to parliament on Wednesday.

Around their necks were photographs of hundreds more women hit by the change in state pension age who could not be at the march because they could not afford the travel costs, work on zero-hour contracts, or do menial jobs that would not give them the time off.

Yet more photographs were worn in memory of other women who had died while still waiting for the government to give them the pension they paid into all their lives with the promise that they would be able to claim when they turned 60.

“These changes to the state pension age for women were cynical exercises by both a Tory and a coalition government to raise £30bn from 3.8 million women,” said Sophie Walker, the leader of the Women’s Equality party, who attended the march along with other MPs, politicians and campaigners.

“Many of these women didn’t find out about the pension changes until they literally went to get their pension or finally got sent an official letter 16 years after the change had been made, leaving them with no time to make alternative financial arrangements.

“We’re not talking about the baby boomers,” she added. “We’re talking about women who stepped out of the workplace repeatedly to do unpaid caring work for their families and the government just banked that unpaid work and took their pensions.

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