PARITY HISTORY – NHS Prescription Charges

The Beginning:

The pension age difference also applied to the widespread extent of discriminatory treatment of older men in non-statutory concessions, such as higher entrance charges applying to men than to women in their early sixties (ie up to 65) to cinemas and theatres, football grounds, municipal swimming facilities, and to statutory concessions such as
public bus travel and medical prescription charges.

Legal Action:

With this direct way closed to equalisation of state pension age, CESPA then decided to pursue more specific targets. First, in a case brought by member Cyril Richardson, challenging the unequal ages applying to men and women
for free National Insurance medical prescriptions. In its eventual response in 1995, the ECJ ruled that the provision of medical prescriptions was nothing to do directly with state pension age and that unequal ages in this respect were thus in breach of the Directive(4).

Summary of References:

The Start – Prescription Charges Inequalities Case

• CESPA Founder members, Manchester Town Hall, 29 August 1986
• Some eleven persons attended, including:
G.W. Alderton, E.I. Anderson, J.H. Bennett, J. Bradfield, M.D. Davidson, J.
Graham, J. Greenwood, D. Higgins, D.G. Lindsay, D.J.D. Yarwood.
• The key aim of CESPA was to obtain for men the same state pension age as
enjoyed by women.

Post case review meeting, Reading, Autumn 1995

Standing: John Bennett – Hon Treasurer

David Yarwood – Hon Secretary

David Lindsay – Legal Adviser


Reg Harrison – Deputy Chair

Maurice Oldfield – Chair

Cryer: Cyril Richardson

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    1. Ketan Shah


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