Pension Justice for Troops
On 12 June 2012, the MoD announced the redundancies of over three thousand service personnel. Of this figure a number were within twelve months of their immediate pension point.
These redundancies do not honour the original employment contract or covenant between soldier and the MoD. These men and women have all faithfully served in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces and repeatedly risked their lives on different tours of duty, with the expectation that, when they completed their period of service, they would be eligible for a pension on which to build a new life for themselves and their families. Given future planned redundancies in the forces this issue is likely to affect many more service personnel.
We call on the Government to urgently review these cases to ensure natural justice and provide the opportunity for all affected personnel to serve the extra year, or less, to reach their immediate pension point as set out in their original contracts of employment.
Government responseAs this e-petition has received more than 10 000 signatures, the relevant Government department have provided the following response:
The Government is aware that some Service personnel made redundant or due to be made redundant will be close to their immediate Pension or Early Departure Payment (depending on which pension scheme they belong to). However, there was no deliberate selection policy or targeting of those close to the point at which they would receive an annual income on retirement. Those who narrowly miss out on receiving an immediate income will receive a significantly larger tax free compensation redundancy lump sum payment and their pension benefits will be preserved for later payment.
It is regrettable that although proximity to pension was not a factor in selection for redundancy, it is inevitable that some of those affected may leave without completing sufficient service to qualify for an immediate income. However, any change to the current policy would only create a new “line” and could well result in a different group feeling disadvantaged.
This e-petition remains open to signatures and will be considered for debate by the Backbench Business Committee should it pass the 100 000 signature threshold.
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