The high court has decided that the decision to push back women’s state pension ages from 60 to 65 (or later), was lawful.
According to the BBC “many women took time out of work to care for children, were paid less than men and could not save as much in occupational pensions, so the change had hit them harder. It is estimated that 3.8 million women were in this position, with some potentially losing out on more than £40,000”.
So apart from the obvious, that women will lose out financially in the long run, what other issues come with delaying women’s state pension ages?
Does it leave women open to Economic Abuse?
Based on the clients I work with, and in particular the work I do around financial planning on divorce, delaying women’s state pension age could potentially trap women in toxic relationships that they might have broken free from if they had the financial security to do so. Economic or Financial abuse, according to the charity Surviving Economic Abuse, is described in the following way:
“Economic abuse is designed to reinforce or create economic instability. In this way it limits women’s choices and ability to access safety. Lack of access to economic resources can result in women staying with abusive men for longer and experiencing more harm as a result.”
I wonder how many women, in abusive relationships, were waiting until 60 to leave their partner, knowing they had a secure income, in the form of the state pension, to support them? With that option pushed back until age 65, or later for some women, what will that do to the individuals emotional well-being?
It is worth noting that economic abuse is by no means one sided, and there will be a number of men who are suffering in such toxic relationships. Maybe the fairer approach, to provide gender equality, would have been to lower men’s state pension ages to 60. But how would we cope with that as an economy?
The backto60 campaign group has vowed to continue fighting the fight, and do not see the high courts ruling as the final word, so watch this space #Backto60