Staff at Barnet’s Summers Lane Civic Amenity and Recycling Centre (CARC) are set to lose their pension rights in the latest service privatisation following a decision at the Environment Committee on 11 June.
Conservative councillors on the committee agreed plans to outsource the CARC to North London Waste Authority, but London Waste Limited, the company to which staff will be transferred in October, are refusing to apply for Admitted Body Status to allow transferring Barnet staff to remain on the Council Pension Scheme, or provide a "broadly comparable pension scheme" which is a minimum requirement. This is a major departure from all previous outsourcing pension arrangements and would set a precedent for all future transfers.
Labour councillors submitted a recommendation that current Barnet staff be seconded to London Waste Limited so they retain their existing employment pension rights, but Conservatives eager to sign up for the 40-year contract, rejected any pension protection for their transferring workers.
Councillor Dr Devra Kay, Labour's Deputy spokesperson for Environment said: "This is privatisation gone mad Barnet style. The Tories are tying the next two generations into a contract. Who knows if either London Waste Limited, or Barnet Council as we know it, will be in existence in 2055 and who knows the quality of service that will be provided or the future of recycling?
"The Conservatives were content that some sort of pension would be negotiated with workers though no-one at Barnet yet knows what that will be. This will set a precedent for Barnet workers to be transferred to private companies in the future with a loss of pension rights. Labour councillors will continue to fight alongside the Trade Unions for staff to get their full pension rights when the issue comes up at General Functions."
The matter has been referred to the General Functions Committee.
1. Details of the Summers Lane Civic Amenity Centre outsourcing:http://barnet.moderngov.co.uk/documents/s23664/Future%20operation%20of%20Summers%20Lane%20Civic%20Amenity%20and%20Recycling%20Centre.pdf
For further details please contact:
Cllr Devra Kay: firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the Barnet Labour Group: 020 8359 2568