Arriva Grand Central proposal to close the Arriva National Pension Scheme

My Ref: MRP 1/8/74

28th April 2021

Circular Num: NP/134/2021

To: The Secretary All Branches & Regional Councils

Dear Colleagues,


We are advised by management that they are intending to cease future accrual in three of their Defined Benefit (DB) pension schemes which will affect our members who contribute to the Arriva National (DB) Pension Scheme. Management have advised that they intend to cease future accrual from 31st July 2021 and offer those affected membership of the Arriva Workplace Pension scheme Defined Contribution scheme.

Management’s reasoning for this proposal is that they state that following the 2019 Actuarial Valuation of the Arriva National Pension Scheme the results reveal a deficit of £18m. However, while we acknowledge that the valuation results reveal a shortfall it is clear from the information provided to us by management that this scheme has been in surplus up until the 2019 valuation.

While we still seek further information from the employer, and a consultation meeting is scheduled for early May 2021, the RMT do not believe that closing the DB scheme is necessary or acceptable. It is the view of this union that while we recognise there is a deficit in the Arriva National Pension Scheme it is not right that any employer takes advantage of the current economic uncertainty or justify such a proposal because other employers are closing their DB schemes.

This is not a race to the bottom and employers should not be allowed to make our members poorer in retirement because they think its fashionable to do so.

In consideration your National Executive Committee on 22nd April 2021 adopted the following report:

“That we note the report from our Lead Officer, together with correspondence from the Company all of
which can be found on file.

We further note with dismay the proposals to close the companies various schemes to future accrual and
that they have commenced formal consultations on the following schemes.

1) Arriva Passenger Services Pensions Plan (APSPP) 2) Arriva London North & Arriva London South Pensions Scheme (ALPS) 3) Arriva Passenger Services National Pensions Scheme (APSNPS)

Following the company's announcement of its intentions our Lead Officer for Arriva (Grand Central) has held a consultation with our company representatives who have unanimously indicated that they wish to enter into a dispute with the company on this matter.

Therfore we instruct that the General secretary undertakes the following action's

1) Writes to the Company informing them that we are in dispute with them on this matter, and to request an urgent meeting with them together with our Lead Officer,.
2) Issues a "proforma' to all our affected members advising them of how best they should object to the Company over its proposals.
3) Issue a communication to our members 'highlighting' the detrimental impact such proposals will have upon them in retirement.
4) To arrange a meeting together with the NEC, Lead Officer, Pensions Officer, and our Grand Central representatives at the earliest opportunity.

Relevant Members, Branches, and Regional Councils to be advised.”

I will keep you advised of any developments.

Yours sincerely,

Mick Cash
General Secretary