There’s been a lot of talk of JAM these past few weeks, mostly related to the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement and predictably WASPIs have been all over it!
The JAM in question is Just About Managing… a snappy new acronym to describe people in the UK who are hovering just above the poverty line. Many of these are women born in the 1950s who were expecting to be able to retire at 60 after a long working life.
However, due to changes in the State Pension Age (not once, but twice!) we now must wait till we are 66. WASPI (Women Against State Pension Inequality) are campaigning for fair transitional arrangements to compensate women for the lack of adequate notice, which meant they had insufficient time to make alternative plans. Many thousands of women received no notification at all from the DWP, who were shown to have badly mismanaged the entire process and are now badly misjudging the anger and determination of women involved.
Many, unable to work through ill health, are in desperate financial straits, in danger of losing their homes and really struggling to survive. Apart from the financial losses, they are also denied state pension age-related benefits such as bus passes and Winter Fuel Allowance payments, making an already difficult situation even worse.
On Wednesday 2 3rd November, to coincide with the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement, local WASPI groups around the country, took to the streets to protest and raise awareness of these women’s plight
Hastings & Rother WASPI group held a demonstration in Hastings Town Centre, which was also attended by Labour Councillors, including Nigel Sinden, Phil Scott and Andy Ives, who are fully in support of the group’s aims.
Hundreds of leaflets were distributed and our members had lively discussions with many local residents, who were almost all unanimous in their support.
■ We actively welcome new members to our campaign group… Find us on Facebook (Hastings and Rother WASPI Group) or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org