Protect Pensions and Stop Solvent Firms walking away from their responsibilities
Tomorrow Seanad Éireann under the Social Welfare Bill 2016 will debate an amendment to the Pensions Act 1990 by inserting a new section 48A.
If passed this new section will ensure that
A solvent firm shall not be allowed to close a defined benefit pension scheme except where the scheme has reached a minimum 90 per cent funding standard
Not a lot to ask, many of you might say, but let us see whether our Senators step up to the mark and do it.
We are urging all Senators to support this amendment and show they care for all of us. The manner in which members of schemes in solvent companies are being treated is a matter of serious concern. It must stop and now is the time to do it.
A pension to a worker is a promise to pay that which they and their employer contributed to during their working lives. It was taken account in pay negotiations. Surely you will agree it is not fair to seek to take it twice. The present situation where pensioners and deferred pensioners have no “Right Of Audience” for redress is a travesty. The only option for people to seek redress is through costly litigation to the courts which individuals and many of their representative bodies cannot afford.
We need change and if passed this amendment will be a first step to highlight the inequities where people who have contributed and paid into such schemes over many years are short changed and left in dire straits.
We need reform of the total pension system both Social Welfare and Occupational Pensions to ensure that pension rights are protected and that the position of women is included in such reform.
It is up to all Senators to vote to start that reform tomorrow.
Contact Mairead Hayes 086 349 8848