West Dunbartonshire’s MP Martin Docherty-Hughes has urged newly retired residents to contact him if they are experiencing delays in applying for their state pension.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has admitted that thousands of people across the UK who have just turned 66 have been caught up in a backlog of delays in receiving their first state pension payments.
Local SNP MP Martin Docherty-Hughes – who has been helping pensioners from across Clydebank, Dumbarton and the Vale of Leven hit by the delays – slammed the UK government for forcing newly retired people into hardship by failing to pay state pensions on time.
UK Pensions Minister Guy Opperman MP issued a statement in the House of Commons acknowledging that thousands of pensioners have faced delays of more than three months in receiving their first state pension payments.
The UK government pledged that hundreds of DWP staff would be redeployed to deal with the pensions backlog.
Martin Docherty-Hughes MP said:
“It’s appalling that thousands of pensioners here in West Dunbartonshire and across the UK are being pushed into hardship due to delays in the DWP processing their state pension payments.
“The UK government has had months to sort out this shambles, but I am still hearing from elderly constituents who despite numerous phone calls to the DWP haven’t received a single penny of their pension payments due.
“UK pensions are already amongst the least generous in Europe, whilst the decision by Westminster to scrap the Triple Lock is only going to make things worse. And, shamefully, this is impacting many of the WASPI women born in the 1950s hit by changes to the state pension age.
“At a time when energy bills are on the rise and the cost of living is soaring, it’s completely unacceptable that DWP backlogs are forcing elderly and vulnerable people to turn to foodbanks and into debt.
“As the local MP I’ve been doing what I can to help those hit by delays to their state pension payments. Many constituents who have contacted me have now received their first payments with arrears.
“I would urge anyone experiencing difficulties with receiving their pension entitlements to get in touch with my office.”
Martin Docherty-Hughes MP can be contacted via email on email@example.com or by calling his local constituency office on 0141 952 2988.