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TUC chief says workers will strike to keep pensions open

Workers feel betrayed because of cuts in their pension benefits and will no longer accept benefits being axed, Trades Union Congress general secretary Brendan Barber has told industry chiefs.

Barber warned delegates at the National Association of Pension Funds&#39 conference in Glasgow last week that industrial action would be taken if employers stopped or reduced pension benefits without trying to find solutions to keep schemes open.

He said staff appreciated that employers face difficulties in keeping schemes open and would work with them to find solutions to funding problems but would strike where employers showed no willingness to save schemes.

Barber told NAPF delegates that the Government had a duty to compensate workers who had lost pensions as schemes collapsed.

The TUC is holding a Pay Up For Pensions march and rally on June 19 in defence of pensions in the workplace.

Barber said: “Workers feel let down, betrayed and angry at the retreat from good pension provision by too many employers. I warn that staff will no longer merely accept a cut in their pension rights.

“They understand that the pension is part of their pay packet and where there is no will by the employer to save a scheme, then unions are prepared to take action. We want our march to be a national wake-up call – a message to politicians that radical action is needed and that tinkering will not do.”

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