Flintshire MPs raise British Steel pensioner’s concerns

Last month Tata Steel UK struck a deal to merge with German company, Thyssenkrupp, a deal which essentially allowed its UK plants to stay open.

Prior to the proposed merger the indebted British Steel Pension Scheme (BSPS) separated from Tata Steel UK following a vote from the workforce. At the time there was a real danger the company could collapse and the pension scheme ending up in the Pension Protection fund, which would have seen an immediate 10% cut.

Members of the BSPS must now decide whether they want a PPF backed scheme or join a new retirement fund sponsored by Tata Steel UK. Pensioners are however concerned about this proposition as they feel whatever outcome will leave them financially worse off

A lot of people in the area will of course be affected and Flintshire MPs, Mark Tami and David Hanson, have raised their constituent’s concerns by writing to the Pensions Minister and also Tata Steel UK.

Mark Tami MP said; “This was obviously a very difficult decision that was made to effectively save the company. We are taking it up with the Government to limit the effect on pensioners as they are understandably concerned, especially those who worked pre 1997, which of course there are plenty in the area.

“Whilst the takeover was necessary to secure jobs and ensure the day to day running of Tata continues, it must now be a priority to safeguard the British Steel Pension fund as much as possible, and both David and I will be working with the Government, the Work and Pensions Select Committee and also Tata itself to achieve this.”

David Hanson said; “The contribution of all those that have worked in the steel industry is well known in Flintshire. They have worked hard in a tough job and have made many sacrifices to ensure that the steel industry could survive. It is only right that we give them the decent retirement they deserve. 

“Mark and I are working together to ensure that the Government takes note of this contribution. They must now do the right thing and re-appraise their decisions on former British Steel Pension Scheme holders. A fairs days work should result in a fair pension.”