Arrria illumination highlights those at wrong end of pensions cut -off date

Cumbernauld’s own silver lady Arria was lit up puprle with 26 other UK landmarks last Monday (September 6 ) including Blackpool tower and Kelvingrove Museum – with a very particular aim in mind.

WASPI women

Illuminating these high profile structures was intended to support the women who have been campaigning for pension justice for the last five years who have become know as the fighting force, Women Against State Pension Inequality or the WASPI women.

North Lanarkshire Council agreed to light up the Aria statue, in Cumbernauld and the Civic Centre in Motherwell to show solidarity with local women who unexpectedly found themselves at the wrong end of a crucial cut-off date

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Spokeswoman Margaret Grierson said: “They total nearly four million women born in the 1950s who were given little or no notice that their State Pension age was being raised.

"This meant an increase of up to six years wait for their pensions with no adequate notice of this increase. This has led to many women being unable to make adequate provision for their retirement.

"Many women in this cohort have no occupational pensions, as in the 1970’s they were not always allowed to join company pension schemes. “Others were in jobs which didn’t pay enough while others had career breaks for child or parent care.”

In June, the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman found that the UK Government was “too slow” to tell some women the rise in the State Pension age would affect them.