Members of the insolvent aviation staff pension scheme are calling on TDs and senators to vote against legislation that they say will allow any deal to tackle its €750 million shortfall to be railroaded through without reference to current or former workers.

The State Airports (Shannon Group) Bill, now before the Oireachtas, includes a provision allowing amendments to the Irish Aviation Superannuation Scheme (IASS), which is the subject of a long-running row between Aer Lingus, Dublin Airport Authority and 15,000 of their former and current employees.

Deferred members, that is staff who have left the companies but have yet to draw their pensions, have written to elected representatives calling on them to vote against section 33 of the legislation, which they say will allow employers to transfer IASS members to a new pension scheme without consultation.

They say that the section allows two solvent companies to wind up a defined benefit pension scheme without fulfilling legally required funding standards for such plans.

The letter, from the Deferred Members’ Committee of the IASS, warns politicians that there will be a general election in “20 months’ time, if not before” and says that the people affected, who have partners and children of voting age, could be in severe financial pain by that time, if the provision becomes law.

Source: Irish Times