WASPI compensation latest as State Pension campaigners react to Rishi Sunak announcement

Campaigners have vowed to keep fighting, and piling pressure on the Department for Work and Pensions, in a battle for compensation.

After a General Election was called by Rishi Sunak last week, the WASPI (Women Against State Pension Inequality) group has refused to let it get in the way of their campaign. The upcoming vote means any movement on delivery of any financial settlement is temporarily suspended.

They say failure to properly communicate changes to the State Pension age left millions of women out of pocket. It is estimated that around 400,000 women born in the 1950s from the North West are awaiting compensation.

They have stepped up their efforts urging Parliament to act on the issue since a report from the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) recommended payouts of between £1,000 and £2,950. Campaign chair, Angela Madden, said their work will continue after the new Government comes in following the July 4 General Election.

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She told Express.co.uk: "What we're hoping for, at the very least, is within the first 100 days, have an open debate on the PHSO report, and allow Parliament to have the say that the Ombudsman wanted it to have. We'll be sending those emails, we'll be having those meetings, we'll be banging on their door so to speak, to resurrect this as quickly as Parliament is resurrected."

"We'll be telling the candidates that that is what they can expect."

The dissolution of Parliament brings to an end recent progress for the campaign in the Westminster. A debate on the question of compensation was held in the Commons this week and outgoing pensions secretary Mel Stride was also asked about the issue in recent days.

Ms Madden pledged that her team will also be active during the build up to the Election. She said: "I'm sure we'll be writing to Mr Sunak and Mr Starmer. Ed Davey already in his pre-manifesto has WASPI in there. We'll see what's in the other manifestos. If WASPI isn't there, we'll be making a fuss about why not."

The Liberal Democrats, led by Ed Davey, have urged for the 1950s women to be compensated in line with the PHSO's recommendations. Another call for action on the WASPI issue that has come to an end thanks to the General Election is a petition to Parliament calling for a public inquiry into how the increase in the state pension age affected 1950s-born women.

The petition had reached over 10,000 signatures, meaning it was due a Government response.

But now all petitions will close on May 30 when Parliament dissolves. Guidance on the Parliament website states: "All petitions that were open on the site will be closed and will no longer be able to be signed."

"They won't be reopened after the election. They'll still be available for people to read on the site."