A woman has become the first in Ceredigion to have her case referred to the Parliamentary Ombudsman after losing six years of her state pension due to controversial changes in legislation.
Cambrian News reported “Pamela Judge, of Adpar, has had her case taken up by Ceredigion MP Ben Lake after the Department of Work and Pensions closed it without finishing their investigation.
On 30 November a Judicial Review of the treatment of 1950s-born women granted permission for a full High Court hearing.
The thousands of women in the UK who had lodged formal complaints have now received letters telling them their cases have been closed because of the legal proceedings.
“This is an unacceptable way to treat these women,” said Mr Lake.
“Some of them have paid full national insurance contributions for over 40 years, only now to be told at short notice that the pension they had reasonably expected to receive at 60 would be delayed by up to six years.
“It is adding insult to injury to disregard their complaints in this way, which is why I am keen that they are looked at by the Parliamentary and Health Services Ombudsman.
“If the government is of the view that it cannot process the complaints until the outcome of the court hearing, then it would be preferable that it suspends these complaints, rather than throwing them out completely
“I shall be writing to the Minister and the Parliamentary Ombudsman to seek clarity on this matter.”
Ms Judge, co-ordinator of Ceredigion Women Against State Pension Inequality, said: “It took the government over 14 years to write to tell us of our new pension age yet it’s only taken them a week to send letters out saying our cases have been closed.
“It’s like being thrown on the scrap heap – the ombudsman is going to have an awful lot of cases to look into.”
She added that around 5,000 women in Ceredigion are affected by the changes to the state pension age.