OVER 200 women born in the ‘50s gathered on Saturday at a Fife-wide WASPI event rallying against 'state pension injustice'.

The event at St Bryce Kirk, Kirkcaldy, was organised by Lesley Laird, MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath, and featured speakers from WASPI (Women Against State Pension Inequality), trade union UNISON and CARF (Citizens Advice Rights Fife).

State pension changes, which suddenly raised the age of eligibility for female claimants from 60 to 65/66 years of age, have impacted 3.8m ‘50s-born women across the UK and there are dozens of women in the Cowdenbeath-Lochgelly area affected.

The audience heard 1,500 women from this age group die in Scotland every year before being able claiming their pension.

State pension age changes are estimated to affect around 5,500 women in the Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath constituency yet CARF dealt with only four pension- related queries over the past year, far fewer than consumer-related queries.

Speaking afterwards, Lesley Laird said: “When I first publicised the event many constituents got in touch to say they wanted to go and we heard many stories of hardship, some of them absolutely heart-breaking.

"Despite so many women being penalised here, the WASPI campaign has been under the radar for too long in Fife".

Lesley Laird’s office is also offering help to ‘50s-born women in the Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath constituency who would like help to process a complaint with the Department of Work and Pensions.