After months of negotiations, and a national strike, [Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander] said most trade unions had now agreed in principle to new schemes from 2015.
From 2015 the various pension schemes under consideration will be changed to a career average basis with their normal pension ages rising in line with the state pension age. In the NHS, the accrual rate will be 1/54th of salary each year, revalued in line with CPI plus 1.5%.
A new offer on NHS pensions was put to the unions earlier this month. Under the updated proposals:
- 530,000 staff earning between £15,000 and £26,557 would be spared any rise in pension contributions next year
- So would those less than 10 years away from retirement
- Higher-earning employees would be expected to pay more
- Staff in areas transferred out of the public sector will retain their right to stay in the pension scheme
- There would also be an improved accrual rate – the rate at which the value of a pension builds up, within a career average pension scheme
- The government has also pledged to consult on the impact of changes on staff in the emergency services
Areas to think about:
Should NHS workers expect a better pension than their private sector equivalents? What financial or ethical arguments support your position?