GMB Union joins firefighters and doctors in seeking Judicial Review over pensions

GMB Union has launched a Judicial Review against the Treasury over its use of the cost control mechanism on public sector pension schemes.

The announcement comes amid similar moves by the British Medical Association (BMA) and Fire Brigades Union (FBU).

GMB claimed that, since 2015, more than four million people working in the NHS, civil service and local government have “effectively been overcharged” for their pensions.

The union stated that the government has passed legislation that would allow them to use the "surplus cash", which GMB estimated at £2.4bn, to pay for the costs of addressing the McCloud judgment.

The McCloud judgment found that the government had discriminated against public sector workers on the ground of age, as younger members were forced to move to a new, less beneficial pension scheme while older workers remained in the existing scheme.

GMB’s legal review is aiming to stop the government using the money to rectify McCloud and return it to public sector workers.

“We have no course of action other than to challenge the government’s intention via Judicial Review,” stated GMB national pensions organiser, George Georgiou.

“It is utterly shameless of them to plunder the pension pots of hard-working public sector workers to pay the costs of a case they clearly lost by not carrying out their responsibilities lawfully. 

“GMB members were told to pay in more than required, we were told that we would get pay rises and live longer - the opposite has occurred just as the government’s response is the opposite of what we deserve.”

The cost control mechanism currently adjusts contributions or benefits if the cost of the pension scheme diverges from the target cost by 2 per cent or more, although the government recently announced changes to the mechanism.

Pensions Age has contacted the Treasury for comment.

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