NewCrystalCentreAngered Waterford Crystal workers are to step up their campaign for a resolution to their pensions saga by mounting a protest at an event to be attended by Taoiseach Enda Kenny in the city this Saturday afternoon.
However, as we were going to press, the Government released details of forthcoming pension legislation for cases like Waterford Crystal – where both the company and pension scheme are insolvent – which will protect pensions of €12,000 or more to a level of 50 per cent, while those under €12,000 will be 100 per cent protected.
Under the terms of the legislation, all members will be expected to contribute to bring the benefit level of all scheme members up to 50 per cent.
If the pension scheme has insufficient funds to cover this amount, the State will fund the shortfall, using funds provided by the Pension Levy.
Independent TD Roisín Shortall, who chairs an all-party committee set up to pursue the issue at national level, is to meet Finance Minister Michael Noonan in Dublin this week to seek clarification on whether the Government intends to contest the Waterford Crystal case.
She and fellow Independent TD John Halligan, who is also a member of that committee, attended a departmental briefing on the new pensions legislation on Tuesday evening.
“Over 20 former Waterford Crystal workers have passed away since this fight began,” said Deputy Halligan. “Enough is enough, the Government needs to resolve this issue immediately.”
Read more about this story in last weeks paper.