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‘Workers Earning £32K Can be Protected from Pension Hike’ - SF

23 November, 2011

 Sinn Féin have tabled proposals which would ensure that public sector workers earning up to £32,000 would not pay the increased pension contributions being implemented by the British government, the party’s Finance Spokesperson Conor Murphy MLA has said.

“I fully support the decision taken by many public sector workers to launch industrial action on November 30th against the British Government’s attempt to implement an increase in pension contributions which would significantly reduce their take home pay,” Mr. Murphy said. 

“Despite the British Government’s threat to deduct £100 million a year from the Executive’s block grant  if we refused to implement this move, we did not concede to that demand and the Executive resolved to deliver the required savings in such a way that protects lower paid workers.

“We also resolved to engage with trade unions in order to develop a graduated scheme which would protect those at the lower-end of the pay scale by seeking an enhanced contribution from those on higher wages within the public sector.

“For example, the Education Minister has drawn up proposals relating to the pension schemes under his control. These proposals would guarantee teachers earning up to £32,000  would not have to pay any increase whatsoever in their pension contributions. Instead, the savings would be delivered through an enhanced contribution from those on higher pay bands.

 “We believe this is the kind of approach which Sinn Féin believes could be a template for other departments and represent a positive way forward within the parameters that the Executive is forced to operate due to the current lack of fiscal control.”

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