Falling pensions

‘Post-retirement payments not keeping up with cost of living’

Pensioners here are getting diminishing returns on their post-retirement payments, with the country’s best efforts to have pensions keep up with the cost of living falling short, according to retired Justice of Appeal Sherman Moore.

Delivering a lecture Thursday night at the Barbados Workers Union’s (BWU) Harmony Hall headquarters, Moore said the benefits were contracting as time when by, posing “our greatest challenge”.

“The fact that pensions become smaller and smaller as time increases, that has always been and will always be our greatest challenge . . . It has always been a challenge, even at the level of the civil service.

“There has been, over the years, a lot of talk about indexing pensions to the cost of living. I don’t think that much has been done about that,” the retired judge said in response to retired BWU General Secretary Sir Roy Trotman who asked about a decline in pensions since the 1930s.

“What within the law may be done to improve and to modernize pension provisions . . . that the labour movement might possibly explore . . . to cause our unions to be able to step up the action on governments,” Sir Roy had asked Moore.

The lecture on The Enactment of Social and Labour Legislation was part of the programme for the BWU’s 75th anniversary celebrations.

“I see it as a fairly difficult prospect,” he told Sir Roy. “Back in the 1940s, 50s there was a cost of living element to the salaries of public servants, [however], the Acts that brought that into being were repealed and not replaced.”

Nonetheless, Moore said there was an attempt at a more meaningful pension through the National Insurance Scheme.   

“The National Insurance Act has tried to do something in relation to pensions because you get some little increase annually, [but] that in no way keeps pace with the cost of living,” he said. 

4 Responses to Falling pensions

  1. jrsmith August 13, 2016 at 3:51 am

    Its time bajans find a (new political party) . no biscuit , rum and corned beef people.. we need people with honesty, management skills, trustworthy ,people’s people who will work on behalf of the people..we need to take back Barbados have some say in our societies.. we need a party who will look back at historic records and have politicians arrested and jail if they are corrupt..

    WE NEED A NEW PARTY,WE NEED A NEW PARTY… get rid of the yesterday people…

  2. Tony Webster August 13, 2016 at 5:14 am

    I suggest with great respect , three things:-
    1. Ask The former chairman of the N.I.S., how cum he jes’ up-so….and resigned.
    2. Whilst well-intentioned, the proposal that emoluments/ raises etc of an employee, ought to be somehow tied to the (presumed net) annual income of the employer baffles me. One of the logical outcomes of this, would be downwards adjustments, where the employers fortunes “dipped”. All in favour of reducing salaries and wages in such circumstances, please hold up yuh wallet and wave.
    3. While apparently not included in the substance of the reported discussion, I strongly recommend that the National Insurance Act itself be placed under the spot-light. On the eveidence before us, this Act needs ameneding- urgently- so as to restrict the N.I.S. board from dishing out almost limitless zillions of funds (carefully and rationally set-aside from, and not admixed with, the Consolidated Cursed Fund), so that the LEFT left hand of government cannot , and WILL NOT in the future get too cozy with the RIGHT hand of government. If, (just for argument), the N.I.S. were to find itself lending (sorry, “investing?) overmuch of its resources with some arm of government, and we had the Central Bank simultaneously (as Bo$$man himself now admits) “printing” money ….would you not expect the C.O.L and inflation to go merrily upwards?

    BTW: what are the terms of repayment for all loans extended to government, by the N.I.S.?

    Your play, citizen.

  3. harry turnover August 13, 2016 at 7:53 am

    Don’t know about pensions in the Private Sector but ALL Civil Servants appointed after 1975 will now get ONE REDUCED PENSION administered by the NIS…a combination of a Government pension and an NIS pension
    Furthermore it seems likely that pension could be further reduce if one decides to retire “early” and get a reduced NIS part of the pension .
    I am of the opinion that those persons ( appointed ) who EVERY YEAR.deliberately use up all 21 days uncertified sick leave whether sick or not should have both their gratuity and pensions further reduced as they are also entitled to CERTIFIED sick leave for up to 6 months with FULL PAY or HALF PAY

  4. Phil August 13, 2016 at 8:37 am

    I have a suggestion I think will help the NIS generate more funds to help cover its pension payments expenses. Now I know that Barbadians have developed a get rich quick addiction. It is called Gambling. every week I notice Bajans from all walks of life, playing Lotto and scratch-off games. especially these same pensioners. Even Priests hide and play. there are numerous methods and types. A lot are disguised as fund raisers. Bingo, Raffles, off track betting, horse racing and the lot. Now here’s my suggestion. create a special once per week lotto game, offer a cash prize fixed at $200,000.00 per draw. Note I said “fixed” . that means whether or not there is a winner, the pay-out remains the same. The tickets will be at $1.00 per chance, with a “block” purchase of 6 chances for $5.00 This my friends can raise over $ ONE MILLION DOLLARS PER MONTH for the NIS.
    Just thinking outide the box here. Think about it.


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