Socialist Worker

BBC pensions ballot is on

by Siân Ruddick
Issue No. 2212

The three main unions representing workers at the BBC will hold national strike ballots of their members next month over pensions.

Workers are furious that directors at the corporation are slashing their final salary pension scheme, and introducing new measures.

The NUJ, Bectu and Unite unions insist that while they will hold talks with management there will be no delay to the strike ballot.

The final salary scheme will be closed to new staff from December while existing staff will have their benefits sharply reduced.

The hypocrisy of the attack is staggering. BBC bosses grab huge salaries, bonuses and pensions.

Director-general Mark Thompson got a £163,000 pension top-up last year alone, while deputy director-general, Mark Byford stands to receive a £400,000 pension under the arrangements.

Workers’ livelihoods in retirement are under threat.

The BBC wants to allow no more than a 1 percent annual increase in the amount of salary that can be considered towards a pension, irrespective of any pay rise or promotion they get.

There has been an angry response from those affected.

Mass meetings across Britain called overwhelmingly for strike action—many voted unanimously to start a ballot.

The workers can win—the meetings show that they are behind a strike.

A victory would inspire every other worker looking to fight the cuts.

Workers in all the unions involved need to vote yes and campaign for the biggest possible vote to send a message to management.

Trade unionists outside of the BBC need to raise solidarity with the fight now.

NUJ union members at the Independent and Independent on Sunday newspapers have voted for an industrial action ballot over the compulsory redundancy of a staff member.

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Article information

Tue 27 Jul 2010, 17:54 BST
Issue No. 2212
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