- Chair of WASPI, Angela Madden, named a ‘platinum champion’ by the Royal Voluntary Service, and is one of only 70 winners invited to Buckingham Palace this weekend.
- WASPI campaign says the award is a “huge boost to their campaign” as Madden is picked from over 3000 nominations.
- Andrew Gwynne MP hails WASPI “already a major success story” – but the group vows to keep campaigning for justice through ‘fair, fast compensation’ to the affected women.
Chair and Finance Director of the Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI) campaign, Angela Madden, has been named a ‘platinum champion’ by the Royal Voluntary Service (RVS).
Madden has been instrumental in the seven year campaign, alongside a management team of six fellow volunteers and a network of WASPI groups, fighting for justice for women born in the 1950s who had their State Pension Age increased without adequate notice.
As a result of WASPI’s work, the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) has found the Department for Work and Pensions guilty of maladministration. Changes to the State Pension Age – legislated for in 1995 – were not communicated to the affected women, leading the PHSO to find that “The opportunity additional notice would have given them to adjust their retirement plans was lost.”
Of 3,000 nominations made to the RVS, 490 were chosen to be recognised as ‘platinum champions’ in the voluntary sector. Madden is one of only 70 of the ‘most outstanding volunteers’ to be invited to celebrate their achievements at the Platinum Party at the Palace tomorrow (Saturday) and to the Eden Project’s Big Jubilee Lunch in London on Sunday.
The awards were launched to “celebrate extraordinary volunteers who go the extra mile to improve the lives of others”, RVS said. The judging panel includes HRH Duchess of Cornwall, Felicity Kendall OBE, Mylene Klass and Elaine Paige OBE.
Platinum Champions and their stories will be showcased on BBC’s The One Show (weekdays 7pm, BBC One) and Morning Live (9:15am, BBC One) throughout the Jubilee week.
Commenting, Angela Madden said:
“It is a real honour to be recognised in this way, but I’m accepting the award on behalf of the whole WASPI team who have done so much in the past seven years to win justice for women born in the 1950s.
“This weekend will be a great celebration both of Her Majesty’s long reign and of the inroads we have made with our campaign. But the real celebration for WASPI women can only come when the government finally recognises the injustice meted out to us.
“Fair, fast compensation for DWP’s maladministration is the only way to resolve this issue. We see the award as a big boost to our campaign, and we intend to carry on fighting until ministers hear us.”
Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on State Pension Inequality for Women, Andrew Gwynne MP added:
“The WASPI campaign is already a major success story and Angela couldn’t deserve this award more. I am proud to support the group in their quest for justice, which is very much overdue.”
For more information, see WASPI’s website: www.waspi.co.uk
NOTES TO EDITORS
- An image is attached, caption: Platinum Champion and WASPI Chair Angela Madden (right) with WASPI parliamentary champion Andrew Gwynne MP (centre) and WASPI Comms Director Debbie de Spon (left)
- The 1995 Conservative Government’s State Pension Act included plans to increase women’s State Pension age from 60 to 65 so that it was the same as men’s. The 2011 Pension Act further increased the State Pension age to 66 for men and women. WASPI agree with the equalisation, but not with the unfair way the changes were implemented.
- The WASPI campaign was founded in 2015 and continues to fight for justice for all women born in the 1950s (on or after 6th April 1950 to 5th April 1960) affected by the changes to the State Pension age.
- WASPI is calling on the government to agree fair and fast compensation for all women affected by the lack of notice regarding the State Pension age increases (1995 and 2011 Pensions Acts) to reflect their financial losses, the sustained damage to their mental health and well-being, and the additional impacts.
About the Royal Voluntary Service Platinum Champions Awards
The Platinum Champions Awards aimed to recognise volunteers from all corners of Britain and from a range of causes. Nominations for Platinum Champions Awards were made in the following categories:
- Older people and dementia support
- Young people and children
- Crisis and welfare
- Mental health and companionship
- Physical health and disability
- NHS and social care
A full list of the judging panel and the other award winners will be listed at https://www.royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk/platinum-champions-awards/ on Saturday evening.