POST OFFICE: PENSIONS – DEFINED BENEFIT SCHEME – PROPOSAL TO CLOSE THE SCHEME
Further to LTB 063/16 and in reference to the Post Office’s proposal to close the Post Office Defined Benefits (DB) Section of the Royal Mail Pension Plan (RMPP).
Despite our strong objections to the unnecessary haste, the Post Office went ahead with its 60 day member “consultation” which closes on 8th April. We consider this “consultation exercise” a sham – it is a flawed process specifically designed to push through the changes proposed. However, despite our strong reservations we must ensure members have their say and participate in the “consultation” in order to let the Post Office know what they really think about these outrageous attacks on their pension and future wellbeing.
Engagement with Members
It is therefore imperative Branches and Representatives encourage membership participation in the Post Office consultation exercise.
• The DB scheme is NOT in crisis and there is NO deficit. In fact there is a very healthy surplus of £136.1m as at September 2015 (indeed the current surplus is higher than at the last formal valuation in April 2012 when it was £135.4m).
• The surplus, by the Post Office’s own projections based on expert opinion, is not expected to “run down” until late 2022. The Post Office is therefore acting with unnecessary haste in conducting the members’ consultation and in its timescales with regards to the proposal to close the scheme.
• If the DB scheme is closed, DB members will be significantly worse off.
Members can participate by one of the following options:
• Email the pension consultation helpdesk on
• Write to them at Pension Consultation Feedback, The Post Office, HR Service Centre, 120 Bark Street, Bolton, BL1 2AX
Next Steps – Consultative ballot (all Members)
As part of our membership engagement, the Postal Executive has agreed to instigate a consultative individual members’ ballot (conducted by independent scrutineers), seeking support for the Postal Executive’s position which as follows:
1. Opposing the closure of the DB scheme.
2. To significantly improve the current Defined Contribution (DC) scheme.
We feel it is appropriate to involve all members in the consultative ballot, irrespective of which scheme they are in. This is necessary to ensure that our policy we are asking members to support doesn’t focus solely on the DB scheme as we also need to provide direction and leadership in respect of improving the DC scheme. The question on the ballot paper will be as follows:
“Do you support the key union policy to keep open the Defined Benefit Scheme to existing members whilst also securing an improved Defined Contribution scheme for current DC scheme members?”
The dates for the consultative ballot are as follows:
Ballot papers dispatched Friday 18th March
Ballot closes Friday 1st April
We need to ensure an overwhelming YES vote from members supporting our policies above. We also need an exceptionally good turnout from this activity as the ballot result will then feed in to the union’s submission to the Post Office’s formal consultation and to the Trustee through our “Body of Evidence” (which is the term we are using for our submission).
A bulletin is being sent to members’ home addresses today and is attached to this LTB for your information.
Engaging With and Educating Members
We now have a dedicated section on the CWU website which Branches and members can visit to find out the latest information on our campaign to oppose the Post Office’s plans. This can be accessed by using the following link:
All communications to members are available to download, as well as web articles and videos.
Finally, Dave Ward, General Secretary and myself are meeting with Baroness Neville-Rolfe, the Post Office Minister BIS, on 22nd March to bring to her attention our opposition to the Post Office’s disgraceful attack on our members’ pensions. Further developments in this regard will be reported.
If you have any questions in relation to this LTB, please contact Lea Sheridan – firstname.lastname@example.org.
Email Attachments – Click to download
· LTB 158/16 – Post Office: Pensions – Defined Benefit Scheme – Proposal to Close the Scheme
· Attachment 1: 2016.03.14 Protect Our Pensions
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