BBC fails to report on the raised women's state pension age (by six years) and negative impact

P. Smith made this Freedom of Information request to British Broadcasting Corporation

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was refused by British Broadcasting Corporation.

Dear British Broadcasting Corporation,

The Conservative government has raised 1950s born women's state pensions age (SPA) by six years. This has had a dire impact on millions of women in UK. They are starving, ill, losing their security, homes, and dying.
Many are unable to get jobs because of age discrimination, or ill health.

Guy Oppermann said that 1950s born women should get apprenticeships.

George Osborne said it was the "easiest savings" he had made.

Those who are in ill health are having to endure the indignity and immense stress of dealing with the Department for Work and Pensions, which operates in a callous cruel and vindictive manner now, under the present government, who have created a "hostile environment", treating everyone as undeserving, and as having no basic human rights or dignity. This too goes unreported by the BBC.

It has also had a negative impact on husbands / partners, and families or friends who are having to support them. Some women cannot leave abusive partners.

Not every woman could accrue a work pension especially parents of children with additional needs or disabilities.

The government obviously did no impact assessment, did not think it through, (or did not care).

These women were not warned of this increase (no letters were sent out) and it came as a devastating and distressing shock to them.

They were also not told that some of them would have to continue to pay National Insurance contributions in order to receive the FULL NEW state pension. Many are still in ignorance of this.

Thousands of these women and their supporters attended a recent rally in London. The only aspect of this reported at all was when two newsreaders got stuck in traffic because of the rally, and had to hail a police car to get through to read the news. (Fiona Bruce and a colleague.)

Too many times these women's plight has been ignored -when it is discussed in parliament, when they ask for coverage and none is given or when there is an organised peaceful rally such as this recent one.

The BBC is not fulfilling it's basic remit, and informing people of this issue in ananywhere near adequate manner, if at all.

We would like you to produce for the public (who pay their licence) the following:

Any information in any recorded form about this issue.

When has this issue actually been reported or referred to?

What internal BBC information or communications e.g. internal memos, letters, emails, notices, reports, instructions, etc. exist which refer to this matter or how it should be reported, handled, or suppressed?

What communications from external sources (government departments e.g. the Department from Work and Pensions, Government ministers, companies, institutions, individuals, political parties), letters, emails, notices, reports, instructions, etc exist which refer to this matter or how it should be reported, handled, or suppressed?

It is blindingly obvious now to these women that something is going on to suppress this issue, and downplay the rise in SPA (it is NOT 18 months it is SIX YEARS) and the highly negative effects on women of having to exist on nothing at all. Not every woman could accrue a work pension or savings. Women are losing their homes. They have lost their retirements.
They have lost dignity and peace of mind.

They have paid their NIs faithfully throughout their working lives, (and are now having to pay even more.)

They have paid their TV licences faithfully, but the BBC appears to have deliberately ignored and betrayed them utterly.

To have this done to us is bad enough.
To be ignored when we are suffering makes it worse. And we ALL feel ignored by the BBC.
Then for a government minister to suggest that we get an apprenticeship, at 60, felt like mockery and disdain. Do I need to spell out why? Telling us to get an apprenticeship ignores the reality and responsibilities we already have in our lives, and ignores the fact and realities of ageing and age.

We would appreciate receiving this information as soon as possible.

Thank you.

Yours faithfully,

P. Smith

Please see websites such as:-

and various Facebook and Twitter Groups.

FOI Enquiries, British Broadcasting Corporation

Dear P. Smith,

Thank you for your request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, as detailed in your email below. Your request was received on 19th October 2018. We will deal with your request as promptly as possible, and at the latest within 20 working days. If you have any queries about your request, please contact us at the address below.

The reference number for your request is RFI20181928.

Kind regards,

Information Rights

BBC Freedom of Information
BC2 A4, Broadcast Centre
201 Wood Lane
London W12 7TP
Email: [BBC request email]

Tel: 020 8008 2882

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FOI Enquiries, British Broadcasting Corporation

2 Attachments

Dear Sir/Madam,


Please find attached our response to your request for information
reference RFI20181928.


Yours sincerely,


Information Rights, BBC Legal

BC2A4, Broadcast Centre
201 Wood Lane, London W12 7TP

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Dear BBC FOI Enquiries,

You say that "The information you have requested is excluded from the Act because it is held for the purposes of ‘journalism, art or literature.’ The BBC is therefore not obliged to provide this information to you and will not be doing so on this occasion."

I disagree, it is a matter for the public interest and it is current hot news.

Many women over 60 are suffering penury.

As they suffer horrendously, you turn the other way with some feeble legal phrase?

As a news provider you should be covering this subject.

I request an internal review, because this is an excuse to gag #1950swomen #1950sbornwomen #backto60 #onevoice #waspi and all the other women who have had their pensions stolen by the government.

Yours sincerely,

P. Smith

FOI Enquiries, British Broadcasting Corporation

Dear P Smith

As stated on your FOI response letter the BBC does not offer an internal review when the information requested is not covered by the Act. If you disagree with our decision you can appeal to the Information Commissioner. Contact details are: Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF, tel: 0303 123 1113 or see

Please note that should the Information Commissioner’s Office decide that the Act does cover this information, exemptions under the Act might then apply.

Yours sincerely,

Information Rights
BBC Legal

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