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Protecting Our Pensions
 
NHS Pensions Action Scotland


Negotiations start on NHS Scotland pensions

The first meeting of the NHS Scottish pension negotiations took place on 15 May 2012 in UNISON House Glasgow.

Following very successful strike action by UNISON Ayrshire and Arran, Lothian, Greater Glasgow and Clyde and Lanarkshire Health Branches, the Cabinet Secretary Nicola Sturgeon met the trade unions in UNISON House on 28 March to discuss the terms of reference for Scottish negotiations.

The aim of the group will be to provide an agreed recommendation to Scottish ministers in terms of employee pension contributions and the NHS Scottish Pension Scheme response regarding longer term reform in light of the Hutton report.

At the meeting UNISON was represented by Lilian Macer, Tam Waterson and Willie Duffy who presented evidenced-based information on affordability and sustainability in relation to what is a very vibrant scheme.

The negotiations take place in the context of certain constraints; a new scheme must be in place by April 2015; the costs of such a scheme needs to be within Treasury spending limits; and the preference of Scottish ministers is for successor schemes to be based on career average principles.

Lilian Macer, UNISON Scotland Convener, said: “UNISON hopes this process of Scottish negotiations will lead to better outcomes for health workers in Scotland in relation to their hard won and paid for pensions entitlements.

Tam Waterson Chair of UNISON’s Scottish Health Committee, said: “This will be a hard and long negotiation, but we will stick with the talks so long as they are positive.

“The Health Committee does reserve the right to return to the argument of force.”

In April, Lilian Macer told the STUC Congress: “We will negotiate to the best of our abilities, but our members expect us to see this campaign through to a decent conclusion.”

The STUC promised support to unions who remain in dispute on pensions.

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