War widows who found love are refused pension compensation
Army - Leon Neal / Getty
War widows who lost their military pensions because they found love were denied compensation by Rishi Sunak.
The War Widows Association has accused the Treasury Department of failing to provide financial compensation to women who either remarried or lived with someone after the loss of their husbands.
The group has been advocating for widows since the David Cameron government announced changes to the pension system that meant that from April 2015, all pensioners would receive them for life.
However, the changes were not applied retrospectively, so those who remarried between 1973 and 2015 were not eligible for a lifelong pension.
In a letter from The Telegraph, the group's chairman Moira Kane cited correspondence received from Steve Barclay, chief secretary of the Treasury, who claimed that compensation could not be granted "because it sets a precedent among all others Would create pension systems ".
Ms. Kane writes that not only does the group disagree with the outcome, but adds that they are "disappointed that the Treasury Department made a decision without allowing us to meet to discuss the options."
Government follows Armed Forces Pact "only when it fits"
She asked why the letter sent on behalf of the Treasury Department quoted portions of the Federation of Armed Forces "but seems to ignore the area that mentions special consideration for those who have given the most, that is, the families of those who have given their lives for have given their land ". ".
She said: "The decision creates the impression that the government will only comply with parts of the Armed Forces Covenant if it suits them or their purpose."
The association has pledged to continue its campaign until it ensures the "correct moral outcome for these ladies".
"These ladies should never have had their pensions cut, but the country can do it now by supporting our campaign and showing the Treasury Department that we care for our military families," she added. "Once you become part of a military family, you will remain part of a military family even if the worst happens and your partner dies."
For the women, of whom it is estimated at 200, the association did not demand additional payments for years of loss of income, but "simple reinstatement".
This would put them on an equal footing with all other war widows who have kept their pension for life since 2015.
The letter also quotes Johnny Mercer, a former veterans secretary, who promised the government "will come to a solution".
The group has now called on the public to contact their MPs and the Treasury and Defense Ministry to "reverse this terrible decision".
A UK Treasury Department spokesman said: “The government is eternally grateful to the armed forces staff and their families for the contributions and sacrifices they have made to this country - again this year as the armed forces cross the nation Supported the pandemic.
“Since 2015, we've been making sure that service staff widows don't lose their pensions if they remarry or live with a new partner, but it is not possible to reintroduce the pension retrospectively without setting a precedent that would not be fair other public service workers. "
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