Socialist Worker

BBC pensions ballot

Issue No. 2211

The five main unions at the BBC met and agreed to call a strike ballot over pensions on Monday of this week.

The NUJ, Bectu, Unite, Equity and Musicians’ Union are all working together.

Workers have held meetings across the country in recent weeks that have attracted hundreds of people.

Some were so large that overflow rooms had to be found at short notice. All of the meetings called for a strike ballot over pensions.

Workers at BBC World Service Arabic went one step further, combining their unanimous vote with a resolution of no confidence in BBC director-general Mark Thompson.

NUJ general secretary Jeremy Dear said, “This is nothing short of a pensions robbery.

“The BBC must withdraw these proposals or face the prospect of widespread strike action and industrial unrest over the coming months.”

The attacks on pensions at the BBC will mean that pension contributions will be capped at 1 percent of workers’ wages, so losing out on higher contributions they have paid into their schemes.

The final salary pension scheme will be closed to new staff from this December, while existing staff will see their benefits sharply reduced.

The BBC blames a £2 billion “black hole” for the cuts, but workers aren’t taking that attacks lying down.

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Tue 20 Jul 2010, 18:40 BST
Issue No. 2211
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