Pensions wrangles continue

The negotiations over public sector pensions are no longer being taken to the streets, but continue apace behind closed doors and now the government and unions are taking the first tentative steps towards an agreement by releasing an update containing suggestions of how the changes should look.

And those earning top salaries would lose out massively. In the first year they pensions contributions would increase 2.4%, in the second year by 4.8% and 6% in the third year. Given the size of their salaries, this represents a significant amount of money from their salaries that would suddenly become tied up.

For those earning less than £15,000 plans are for there to be no change at all to contributions, whereas those earning less than £21,000 will have pension contributions capped at 1.5% of salary a year. Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, said: ‘The Government and the TUC have held a series of constructive meetings to discuss public service pension reform.’

But murmurs from the unions suggest things won’t be sorted out quite so easily. Mark Serwotka, the general secretary of the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union, said: ‘From the outset the Government has stubbornly refused to compromise on any of the key issues facing public servants, meaning we have been talking but not able to negotiate.’

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