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Pressure on government to 'right a wrong' over Norfolk women's pensions is welcomed

PUBLISHED: 10:49 23 April 2019 | UPDATED: 11:00 23 April 2019

Members of the Norfolk Broads - PAIN group with Norfolk County Council leader Andrew Proctor (centre). Pic: David Birch.

Members of the Norfolk Broads - PAIN group with Norfolk County Council leader Andrew Proctor (centre). Pic: David Birch.

David Birch

A group which has campaigned for 45,000 Norfolk women affected by state pension age changes have welcomed a move to put pressure on the government over the issue.

Labour councillor Emma Corlett with the sanitary products they have placed in toilets at County Hall. Pic: Norfolk Labour groupLabour councillor Emma Corlett with the sanitary products they have placed in toilets at County Hall. Pic: Norfolk Labour group

Norfolk County Council recently agreed a motion which supports the campaigning of the Norfolk Broads - PAIN (Pension Action in Norfolk) group.

Up until 2010, women got state pensions at 60, but the government has been raising the pension age to bring it in line with the retirement age for men.

It means women born in the 1950s and 1960s have twice had their state pension age increased.

The current state pension age is 65 for men and women, rising to 67 by 2028.

The Norfolk Broads group, which has almost 200 members, says women were given insufficient personal notice by notice by the government about the changes, so many were left in financial hardship, because they were unable to make alternative pension plans in time.

Members of Norfolk County Council recently passed a motion that council leader Andrew Proctor should write to the secretary of state for work and pensions, calling on the government to reconsider transitional arrangements.

The Norfolk Broads group leaders - Lynn Nicholls, Lorraine White and Annette James - thanked Conservative Judy Oliver for proposing the motion.

The trio said: “We are delighted to gain this support, which helps keep the pressure on the government to right a wrong affecting not only us, but our children and grandchildren in the future.”

Meanwhile, County Hall will have emergency supplies of women's sanitary products available to visitors and staff, despite it not being agreed by council.

Labour, highlighting the issue of period poverty – where women and girls are unable to afford products such as tampons - had put forward a motion that the council provide them for free for staff and users.

But, amid claims providing the products for free could cost more than £550,000 the Conservatives amended the motion, so a feasibility study could be done.

However, Labour councillors have used money from the controversial councillor allowance increase to buy products, which have been left in two toilets at County Hall.

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