The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has attacked Post Office proposals to close its defined benefit (DB) pension scheme to staff who joined after April 2008.

The proposed plans would close the company’s DB scheme for staff who joined before 1st April 2008. These staff would be forced to join the company’s defined contribution scheme from September this year.

The plans have not been finalised and the company will hold a 60 day consultation with staff over the proposals.

The CWU described the changes as ‘an attack on our members’ rights’ and accused the Post Office of rushing into changes.

CWU assistant secretary Andy Furey said the Post Office had not spoken to the union before making its proposals.

‘The Post Office has rushed into this 60-day process without any meaningful dialogue with the CWU and without allowing any opportunity for alternatives to be explored,’ he said.

The CWU has sent letters of protest to Post Office minister Lucy Neville-Rolfe and Royal Mail Pension Trustee Chris Hogg requesting urgent meetings to formally set out the union’s objections.

The letter to Neville-Rolfe said the union was not opposed to changes but argued there was no need to close the DB scheme while it still had a surplus until 2022.

‘The union is not opposed to any change, but we cannot accept that there is any need to close the scheme when the Post Office itself is forecasting that the surplus will last until late 2022,’ it said,

A spokesman for the Post Office the company has been talking to the union about this for months and it would listen to staff views through the consultation.

‘These are just proposals at this stage. We start the consultation on Friday and there are a range of ways for people to share their views, there is a phone line and a website,’ he said.

‘There is also a series of workshops that will be held across the UK where people can talk about the proposed changes in person.’

Source: City Wire