Irish Life: Decisive vote for industrial action to defend pensions

unite-white-out-of-redDecision reflects anger at unilateral closure of scheme in surplus

Trade union Unite today (Monday) announced that a sizeable majority of its members in Irish Life have voted for industrial action in response to the company’s unilateral decision to close its Defined Benefit pension scheme as of June 30th.

Overall, the Defined Benefit scheme has over 3300 members, including pensioners and deferred members.

The scheme has never been in deficit and currently has a surplus well in excess of €200 million, with assets of around €1.1 billion.

Commenting, Unite Regional Coordinating Officer Richie Browne said:

“In the run-up to the ballot, Unite held consultative meetings in Dublin and Dundalk to discuss the company’s unilateral decision to close the Defined Benefit scheme and our members’ response to this decision.

“The fact that nearly 70% of members voted to take industrial action reflects their anger at the unilateral decision to close a healthy pension scheme with assets of well over a billion Euro and a surplus of approximately €200 million.

“It is noteworthy that members who are not in the DB scheme also voted to support their colleagues who are in the scheme, in the knowledge that, if this assault on the DB scheme is allowed to go through, no terms and conditions are safe.

“Unite members will now decide on the timing and nature of the industrial action to be taken”, Mr Browne concluded.

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