Three Score Plus
Over two and a half million (2,550,700) women who were born in the 1950s are Pensioners in Waiting and many are struggling with their waiting years.
Practically none of them knew that the State Pension Age (SPA) had changed and were shocked to discover their retirement age was anything up to six more years away.
Every woman has a story, an account of how the postponement of the SPA has impacted on her. There are many recurring themes expressed by the women, they include taking early retirement to care for elderly relatives – thinking their pensions were due in a couple of years or so – and taking voluntary redundancy when the country was coping with the global crash. Many organisations (particularly in the public sector) had to make cut backs at that time. The most common theme is that women have had to use the savings designed to help during retirement – just to manage. Some have nothing left.
Back to work
A return to the job seeking environment has proved problematic and humiliating. Imagine being subjected to the process of “signing on” and satisfying the requirements of claiming Job Seekers Allowance when you might have worked since you were 15, particularly if you once held a management and/or professional role.
The responsibility of care for older and/or younger relatives hasn’t suddenly disappeared either, and it would seem the government hasn’t considered the implications (and costs) of providing the missing care now that the carers have JSA obligations or work to find.
Many more women (particularly those who live alone) are having to sell their family homes and move into smaller or rental properties.
Retirement dreams have been tamed back or disappeared completely.
It is the lack of preparation which has led to practical, emotional and financial problems and it is these problems which Three Score Plus aims to address or prevent.
Our aim is to provide a sympathetic environment to share concerns, advice, hints and tips in support of each other. If our fundraising plans are successful, we could develop into a grant-giving charity, offering financial support in emergencies. We certainly want to address employment and have big ideas in that area.
We want it to be informative yet still fun and offer a little light relief, particularly if chatting on line is one of the only social interactions you enjoy. Who knows, if we grow, instead of volunteers running the show, we may be able to employ a staff with the skills, experience, knowledge and time to develop Three Score Plus into something well used, recognised and appreciated.
We certainly have plenty of ideas of how the project could grow. Meanwhile, baby steps.