Thursday, January 18, 2007

20 years of pension contributions...

Tomorrow is the twentieth anniversary of my having started work for my current local authority employer (there’s no need to post comments saying that I don’t look that old – I know ;p)

For twenty years I have been paying in to the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS).

At today’s meeting of the UNISON Greater London Regional Local Government Committee we received a further update on the current discussions about the “new look” LGPS. I am not at all happy at indications that the most we are likely to get through negotiation by way of enhanced protection is a lowering of the age at which the rights of current scheme members are protected by four more years – this isn’t good enough. It will let down in particular the young members we have recruited through the course of this dispute.

I am even less happy that local government workers forced into redundancy in their fifties may no longer receive a pension and – if they do – there could be “actuarial” reductions of around 40% in the pensions of 55 year olds being made redundant (that’s a lifetime 40% reduction of course!) I would rather we didn’t have to negotiate redundancies – but where there are redundancies then a reasonable amount of compensation softens the blow.

I hope that twenty years from now the LGPS will be better than it is today – but that will only be true if we fight hard now to defend our rights.

No comments: