Fire Brigades Union seeks Supreme Court appeal in pensions dispute


Share this content


Fire Brigades Union appeals Supreme Court decision

The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) is seeking permission to appeal to the Supreme Court regarding the costs control mechanism imposed on public sector pension schemes by HM Treasury, as reported by the Fire Brigades Union.

The FBU previously succeeded in challenging the government’s 2015 public sector pension reforms, which were deemed age discriminatory.

This legal victory forced the government to reinstate previous pension arrangements and compensate affected workers under the McCloud remedy.

The pension reforms included a costs control mechanism that allowed specific member-related costs to be funded by reducing benefits or increasing contributions.

HM Treasury applied this mechanism to cover the costs of remedying its unlawful age discrimination, which the FBU argues is an inappropriate use and discriminatory against younger members who cannot benefit from the McCloud remedy.

Appeal rejected by the Court of Appeal

The Court of Appeal rejected the FBU’s challenge, but with support from PCS, POA, RCN, and Unite, the FBU is now seeking permission to appeal to the Supreme Court.

Matt Wrack, the general secretary of the FBU, stated: “The Fire Brigades Union is seeking to take our fight against pension discrimination to the Supreme Court.”

Wrack continued: “We won a landmark challenge against pensions robbery in 2015, with unfair changes to public sector pensions ruled to be age discriminatory.

“It is shameful that the government is now trying to force firefighters and other public sector workers to shoulder the costs of this botched attack on their hard-earned pensions.”

Government’s stance and FBU’s resolve

The government’s stance has been to pass on the costs of the discrimination remedy to the members of the public sector pension schemes.

The FBU maintains that this is unjust and continues to pursue legal avenues to address the issue.

Wrack emphasised: “Working people shouldn’t have to pay the price for the government’s mistakes. The FBU will pursue all avenues to win justice for our members.”

The FBU’s determination to appeal highlights the ongoing struggle between the union and the government over pension reforms.

The outcome of this appeal will have significant implications for public sector workers and the administration of pension schemes.

Broader support and implications

The FBU’s efforts are backed by several unions, indicating widespread discontent with the current pension reform approach.

The support from PCS, POA, RCN, and Unite underscores the broader impact of the government’s decision on various public sector workers.

The Supreme Court’s decision on whether to hear the appeal will be a critical moment for all stakeholders involved.

The FBU and its supporters await the outcome, which will determine the future course of pension scheme administration and fairness for public sector employees.

Receive the latest breaking news straight to your inbox