Notes from the CUPW Lower Mainland Retirees Organization – January 6, 2017
Happy New Year.
- Bill C-27. This Bill which was introduced into the House of Parliament by the Federal Liberals is still awaiting second reading. Bill C-27 would allow Canada Post to convert of secure Canada Post Defined Benefit Pension Plan into a less secure Target Benefit Pension Plan. It would also allow Canada Post to go one by one to retirees (and current workers) to pressure us to change our Canada Post Defined Benefit Pension Plan to a Target Benefit Pension Plan.
We need to work to stop Bill C-27. I know many of you have sent emails and letters to your MP and to Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau. If you have not done this please do it, and if you have already done it, please send another letter or email. Bill Morneau’s email address is Bill.Morneau@parl.gc.ca. His mailing address is House of Commons Ottawa, OntarioCanadaK1A 0A6.
Here is a chart about the differences between a Defined Benefit Pension Plan (which we all have) and what Bill C-27 would bring.
|What we have currently under the Canada Post Defined Benefit Pension Plan||What Bill C-27 could bring|
|Retirement security||Under the Canada Post Defined Benefit Pension Plan we have a secure retirement. The amount we receive in our pension is not affected if the stock market goes down.
We can calculate the amount we will receive in our pension based on our age, earnings, and our years of service.
We have a secure retirement.
|Bill C-27 permits the employer to change our pension plan to a Target Benefit Pension Plan (with some form of consent).
Under a Target Benefit Pension Plan, the amount we receive at retirement is just a target. It could go down if the stock market goes down.
This means you will not be able to calculate how much money you will receive in your retirement.
|Reducing what retirees currently receives for their pension||Under the Canada Post Defined Benefit Pension Plan it is virtually impossible to reduce the amount a retiree currently receives in their pension.||Under a Target Benefit Pension the amount of money a retiree receives as their pension could be reduced if the plan is in bad shape.
Retirees could go from a secure retirement to a very insecure retirement
|Removing the right to Disability and Survivor’s Pensions||Under the Canada Post Defined Benefit Pension Plan it is virtually impossible to remove the right to a Disability Pension (Medical Retirement) to those who qualify for it.
It is also virtually impossible to remove the right to a Survivor’s Pension to the eligible spouses of a deceased Canada Post Pension Plan Contributor
|Under a Target Benefit Pension Plan the right to Disability Pensions (Medical Retirement) and Survivor’s Pensions could be totally eliminated if the plan is in bad shape.|
|Pressuring individual workers and retirees to leave the pension plan||Under the Canada Post Defined Benefit Pension Plan it is virtually impossible to go to workers and retirees one by one and pressure them to leave that plan||Bill C-27 would allow Canada Post to go to individual workers and retirees and totally pressure them to leave the Canada Post Defined Benefit Pension Plan and join the Target Benefit Pension Plan. This will put huge pressure on individual workers and individual retirees.|
|If there is a deficit in the pension plan||If there is a deficit in our Defined Benefit Pension Plan, Canada Post has the obligation of making up that deficit.
But the last going concern evaluation of the Canada Post Pension Plan showed it had a $1.2 billion dollar surplus. A going concern evaluation assumes the plan is going to continue in to the future.
It is true that Canada Post has $5.9 billion dollar solvency deficit. A solvency deficit only comes into play if the plan winds up.
Rather than introducing Bill C-27, the Federal Government should introduce legislation to exempt the Canada Post Pension Plan for solvency evaluations. All the major pension plans in BC do not have to do solvency evaluations
|If there is a deficit in a Target Benefit Pension Plan, the amount of money future retirees receive will be reduced, and the amount of money current retirees receive could be reduced.
Current and retired members will have all the risk if there is a pension plan deficit. Their pension will be affected.
- The Parliamentary Committee Recommendations about the future of Canada Post: There has been no movement on this since December, as the House of Parliament is not sitting until late January 2017. We need to watch what will happen to our pensions, and we need to continue to push for postal banking. We have previously sent out the petition, and are asking you to sign it, distribute it to your friends, family, neighbours etc.
- B.C. Medical Services Plan rebate: Retirees who are eligible and who apply are able to get 50% of the money we paid for BC Medical Plans Premiums in 2016, rebated to us by Canada Post. To get this you need to have:
-Actually have paid BC Medical Plan premiums in 2016
– Had 15 years continuous service (includes casual time) when you retired or be retired on the grounds of disability
– Submit proof of payment. You can get this through statements from your financial institution of by phoning BC Revenue Services at 1-877-405-4909 for a free statement (May take 6 weeks-8 weeks)
-Use the proper form. Follow this link
– Remember this rebate is taxable and should be reported on your income tax.
- Stay tuned for information about an upcoming meeting.