“While the vast majority of pension plans have the resources needed to withstand the impact of COVID-19 on their investments, if a plan is forced to sell assets at fire-sale prices to meet its obligations, it will have a devastating effect. Pension plans that are forced to take this step will likely be left with substantial pension deficits that will be very difficult to eliminate." Bert Blundon, NUPGE Secretary-Treasurer
Pensions and Retirement Security
The reason cutting public sector wages hurts the economy so badly is that, like almost all low- and middle-income earners, public sector workers spend what they earn in their communities. The bulk of what public sector workers earn goes to businesses providing items like groceries or housing. When you take that money out of the community, everyone feels the pain.
As NUPGE members who work to provide services for seniors can tell you, funding has not kept pace with need.
Given that workers and retirees worked decades to earn their pensions, they should not be left at the back of the line.
The collapse of Sears Canada is a classic example of how too many of the laws governing corporations protect the wealthy, while ignoring the rights of workers and the long-term health of the economy.
“NUPGE’s pension webinars provide our members with the tools and information they need to protect and improve our members’ pensions.” — Elisabeth Ballermann, NUPGE Secretary-Treasurer
Former Sears workers are having their pension fund cut, yet again, because those who controlled Sears made a deliberate decision to leave the pension plan underfunded.
“I’m as pleased as punch that we can take away some anxiety that some members might have about their retirement income." — Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President
Thousands joined the MGEU’s 2 pension tele-meetings to talk about potential changes to pensions and ask questions. If you missed the call, recordings of both meetings are now available.
“Our union remains committed to protecting public pensions and ensuring the government lives up to its promise to protect them as well." — Michelle Gawronsky, MGEU President
Whether you’ve been working on pension issues for years or are still thinking about getting involved, the information in the webinars will be helpful.
“By creating a subsidiary entity of Alberta Health Services (AHS) covering lab services province-wide, this government has created a further division in public health care in Alberta." — Trudy Thomson, HSAA Vice-President, and laboratory technologist
“What the CCPA report shows is that the retirement security of millions of Canadians is taking a back seat to windfall profits for well-heeled shareholders.” — Elisabeth Ballermann, NUPGE Secretary-Treasurer
“These webinars are intended to give pension activists, advisory committee members, union officers, and trustees the tools they need to secure and protect decent pensions for our members” — Elisabeth Ballermann, NUPGE Secretary-Treasurer
“When a company in financial difficulties is giving $1.4 billion to shareholders and handing executives millions of dollars in bonuses, it’s ridiculous to claim that legislation to protect pensions will affect the ability of the company to survive. What legislation to give pension plans priority in bankruptcy proceedings will do is protect workers and retirees from greed and incompetence.” — Larry Brown, NUPGE President
The manual is an easy-to-use guide including much of what you need to know about pensions and retirement from a union perspective and a valuable resource to help educate activists in the field of pensions. The 170-page manual contains 14 chapters covering a variety of pension's topics.
“The idea that it is in any way acceptable to scrap defined benefit pension plans so hedge fund managers and others can make a quick buck is one reason income inequality is a growing problem.” — Elisabeth Ballermann, NUPGE Secretary-Treasurer
Report from the National Union Pension Conference, February 2017.
“Our members depend on us to help them achieve the secure retirement they deserve. There was a lot of knowledge in the room and it was a great chance to learn from each other.” Elisabeth Ballermann, NUPGE Secretary-Treasurer.
"In Alberta in 2013, we proved that solidarity works. Many people from many backgrounds came together to defeat an unfair attack on workers. It’s time for us to step up to the plate and fight back this new attack,." — Mike Parker, HSAA President