Thursday, March 02, 2023

TUC Pensions Conference 2023: "Pensions in a Cost of Living Crisis"

Yesterday I returned to Congress House, the TUC headquarters for its annual pension conference. This event involves union officers, pension trustees and activists with expert presentations/Q&A and workshops. It was great to be back in person at long last. I am a UNISON appointed employee member of a LGPS Pension Board and the Local Government trade union appointee to the London CIV. 

The theme this year had to be "Pensions in a Cost of Living Crisis". Below is based on my tweets during the day. Not a comprehensive report on all the presentations since I was trying to pull together and send to my employer a pay claim while listening. 

I was lucky to be picked by panel chairs to ask a number of questions. I was sitting in the front (as normal) and wearing my lucky blue checked shirt. 

Great to be back at for its #pensions conference. Open by new General secretary & 1st keynote speaker David Pitt-Watson (good to see again)  

David speaking persuasively on the case for #CollectiveDefindedContribution #pensions. DB best - since employer guarantees, but DC annuities worse since invest in low return gilts. #CDC 30% better DC. (Or even #CollectiveDefinedContribution #CDC. I will post more on CDC.

Now important panel on improving trustee diversity & inclusion Chair Janice Turner , Westminster LGPS, Chris Smith & Zoe Burdo from (thanks for the name check Chris)

Keynote speaker Shadow DWP secretary MP speaks about proud record on #pensions by & unions but now must undo when in power years of #tory pension failure

Labour’s priorities for pensions: 1️⃣ Economic growth underpinning a growing state pension 2️⃣ Support for older people who want to stay in work 3️⃣ Expanding auto-enrolment

My question to would reconsider role of #DB pensions? My #LGPS is now 123% funded. Lots of colleagues here in Private DB have had their funds closed unnecessary. Also, do you share concerns about employers breaking #tupe & #pension promises?

He asked for clarification & yes to concern about employers breaking pension promises

Panel on Extending working lives. #TUCpension23 being addressed by National Officer Teresa Donegan on #unisoncollage & member learning.

Final Panel: Big ideas to fix the pension system Chair by former Labour pension minister now with trade union owned
Replying to and
The ideas - state annuity, state pension as property right, public asset manager - certainly lived up to the ‘think big ideas’ challenge 👏

Since this was the TUC, of course, the event had to finish with some "beer and sandwiches" (well, crisps and nuts). At which I was given a great compliment by the legendly pension figure, Con Keating "I see you are still causing trouble John".

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