Fianna Fáil TD and Chair of the Employment Affairs and Social Protection Committee, John Curran has said that the Minister has stalled on her commitment to amend the Social Welfare, Pensions and Civil Registration Bill to allow for the inclusion of defined pension schemes.
Earlier this month in Dáil Éireann, the Deputy raised the significant delay in introducing amendments to the Bill at Committee Stage. To date there has been no indication as to when they will be brought forward.
He said, “The second stage of the Social Welfare, Pensions and Civil Registration Bill was debated and concluded on July 14th last.
“Despite then committing to bring forward amendments at Committee Stage of the Bill, which are intended to better protect the benefits of scheme members, the Minister appears to have stalled on this promise.
“Fianna Fáil have drafted a bill (Pensions) (Amendments) (No.2) 2017 to provide for an appeals mechanism where a pension scheme is being wound up to ensure employees are entitled to a fair process.
“Numerous defined benefits schemes nationwide, which have been in surplus, have been wound up to the detriment of their members. The members of other defined benefit schemes face a degree of peril or risk because of the Government’s failure to respond as it said it would.
“Six months have lapsed and yet we eagerly await these amendments. I have called on the Minister to indicate when this commitment will be met.
“There continue to be many issues relating to the defined benefit pensions sector in Ireland which must be urgently rectified to ensure both the viability of the schemes and the protection of their members.,” concluded Deputy Curran.