Over 6,000 Royal Mail managers are being asked whether they back proposed changes to their pensions which could lead to some staff who have been promoted facing cuts of £4,888 a year when they retire.
In a consultative ballot that starts today (Monday 22 July), members of Unite, Britain’s biggest union are also being asked whether they support government plans to sell-off the Royal Mail this autumn.
The union accused the Royal Mail of fattening the company up for privatisation with the proposed pension changes and penalising postal workers who had stayed loyal to the company and worked their way up.
According to the company’s own figures, a postman or postwoman who has gained promotion to become a manager in a delivery office, stands to lose £97,760 in pension payouts if they retire at 65 and live until they are 85 years old. (See notes)
The proposed changes to the Royal Mail pension scheme come just over a year after the government introduced its ‘pension solution’ as part of the Postal Services Act in March 2012.
The consultative ballot runs from Monday 22 July to Friday 16 August.
Commenting, Brian Scott, Unite officer for Royal Mail managers said: “The views of hardworking staff who have made Royal Mail the success it is today are being ridden roughshod over.
“It is no coincidence that the company is putting forward proposals to cut pensions ahead of the sell-off. The complex changes will penalise people who have stayed loyal and worked their way up, creating uncertainty for people who have paid into their pension in good faith.
“Members face an uncertain future of privatisation and pension cuts. Any cuts to the pension scheme to fatten the company up for privatisation will not be tolerated by our members. It is time their voice was heard and their concerns addressed.”
For further information contact Alex Flynn, Unite head of media and campaigns on 020 3371 2066 or 07967 665 869.
Notes to editors
Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.
Examples of how the pension changes will affect managers
A member aged 40 with 20 years’ pensionable service would get a pension of £21,512 on retirement at age 65 before the changes. After the changes, the pension would be £16,624, if the member retires at age 65.
A member aged 55 with 35 years’ pensionable service would get a pension of £17,059 on retirement at age 65 before the changes. After the changes, the pension would be £12,996, if the member retires at age 65.