Dagenham Ford workers could strike over pension cuts

THOUSANDS of Ford employees in Dagenham and across the country could be set to strike over plans to cut current and former workers’ pensions.

The Unite union will ballot around 11,000 members at its six UK plants. If the strike goes ahead it would be the first national Ford strike since the 1970s.

The union is against plans by the car giant to tie future pension increases to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rather than the Retail Price Index (RPI), which would leave more than 40,000 people out of pocket.

Unite national officer, Roger Maddison, said: “This is an opportunistic attack on over 40,000 current and former Ford workers. It is disgraceful and immoral for Ford to target pensioners who have spent a lifetime saving for their retirement and giving their best to the Ford Mmtor Company.”

CPI is less than RPI in most years because it excludes housing and council tax costs. Over someone’s whole retirement the change will add up to a significant loss, said a Unite spokesman.

“For example, if pensions paid today had been linked to CPI instead of RPI for the last twenty years they would now be 14 per cent lower,” he added.

A Ford spokesperson said the company was following �Government guidance that CPI was a “more appropriate measure” of inflation for pensioners.

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Are you a current or former Dagenham Ford worker? How do you feel about the cuts? Call our newsdesk on (020) 8477 3900, email postnewsdesk@archant.co.uk or leave a comment below.