MP critical of impact of reforms to pensions

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BLYTH Valley MP Ronnie Campbell has hit out at pension reforms as women in south east Northumberland are set to lose out.

An estimated 700 women in Blyth Valley who were born in 1952 and 1953 will not be eligible for the single tier pension since they are due to retire in 2017, before the state pension reforms come into effect.

Men born during the same period, however, will qualify.

The news comes after the government claimed that it would be transparent about who will lose out.

However, Mr Campbell said it failed to make clear the full consequences of the planned reforms.

He said: “Ministers have been caught red-handed hiding the truth on pensions reforms.

“This government’s pension changes have hit hard-working women time and again and these reforms are no different.

“Around 430,500 women will be nearly £2,000 worse off compared to men.

“This could mean that women draw a state pension income of around £1,900 a year, that’s £36.55 a week, less than a man of the same age.

“The exact difference will depend on the number of contributions each woman has made, and whether she receives means-tested benefits or not.

Instead of being honest with the women that will lose out, this government tried to bury the truth.

“It’s about time this government had the decency to be honest about who will lose out under their plans.”