Thursday, 30 June 2011

Mark Serwotka, general secretary of the PCSU on the crisis in pensions provision in the UK:


"... The collapse of private sector pensions is one of the greatest outrages of our time. Just over a decade ago half of all private sector workers were in a workplace pension scheme; today it's less than a third. The cost of that decline will be borne by the taxpayer through increased eligibility for means-tested benefits such as pension credit, housing benefit and council tax benefit; greater health and social care costs; and an increase in our already shocking levels of pensioner poverty.

However, while pensions have been ripped away from ordinary workers, the directors of large companies continue to net very generous pensions. Research by the TUC shows that the average director's pension in a FTSE 100 company is worth £3.4m, while the chief executive averages £5.6m. These generous fat cat schemes at the top lapped up the bulk of the £37.6bn in tax relief that private sector pensions get every year.

UK pensioner poverty is among the worst in Europe – only Cyprus, Latvia and Estonia abandon their pensioners to a greater degree. France spends over twice as much on pensions as the UK, Germany two-thirds more. How is further damaging pension provision in this country going to tackle that crisis?...."

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