Pension compensation worth "peanuts"

16 June 2004
The Transport and General Workers' Union has announced that the government's pensions compensation fund will mean most people will only get "peanuts".

The government made public in May a pensions compensation fund of £400 million over 20 years, which will be available to people who have lost out on their pension.

The union welcomes the government's acceptance of the principle of compensation, but is worried that the money will not be enough as it only equates to 96p a day for each of the 60,000 workers affected.

These are workers who have lost their pension when their company went bankrupt, the new fund gives each of these people just £340 a year.

"The pensions robbery is one of the greatest scandals of our time and affects thousands of our members," says T&G's general secretary, Tony Woodley.

"Either the money is not enough and most people will get peanuts, or the criteria is so narrow that only a handful of the 60,000 will qualify for compensation."

He added: "We will be speaking to ministers to ensure that more money is injected into the fund so that everyone who has been cheated out of their pension will be compensated."

Mr Woodley further suggests that a windfall tax should be placed on excessive bank profits in order to raise the necessary cash.

The TUC is organising a national march and rally for this Saturday, June 19th.

Mr Woodley says about the march: "I urge those who want justice for pensioners now and in the future to make their voice heard on the streets of London on Saturday."