Pension Update

CWU members vote yes in O2 pension ballot

CWU members in mobile firm O2 have backed negotiated changes to the final salary pension scheme which preserves the option of keeping full final salary benefits.

The ballot closed yesterday (Thursday) with 94 per cent of those who voted backing the CWU proposals. Almost 60 per cent of members took part in the ballot, a high turnout for consultative ballots.

Andy Kerr, CWU deputy general secretary, said: “This is a fantastic result which strongly endorses the work of CWU’s negotiating team. As part of the deal members can receive independent financial advice and then get on with choosing which pension option suits them best, with the option of retaining their full final salary pension.”

Sally Bridge, CWU assistant secretary, said: “The high turnout in this ballot shows that people are – contrary to popular belief – interested in pensions. Our members not only care about their pension scheme, but were prepared to get involved and take part in this ballot.

“This strong endorsement demonstrates that our members in O2 value the significance of what we’ve tried to do for them on this difficult but vitally important employment benefit.”

Over 2,000 employees, including managers and non-managers, are affected by these changes. Members of the O2 section one pension scheme (a defined contribution scheme which was established in 2001) are unaffected. A 60 day consultation exercise will now begin in the company and members of sections two and three of the O2 pension scheme will have the following options to choose from:

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