Stop the dangerous changes to pensions
The campaigning group 38 Degrees are asking for signatures to a petition the text of which reads:-
Please protect our pensions. The government should do all it can to save Tata Steel - but must make sure that failing companies can't raid their employees' pension pots.
This petition has been raised because it appears that:
Right now the government is looking at introducing new laws that put millions of pensions at risk. They claim that these are "unique", but experts and MPs are warning it sets a dangerous precedent that would allow failing companies to permanently cut pensions. Millions of people across the UK depend on their pensions, and millions more will in the future. These changes could leave them all worse off in the years to come. The government's consulting on the changes to the laws right now and they're trying to keep it hush-hush. This petition is our way of demanding they don't rush through these laws, forcing the plans out of the shadows and making them listen.
The link to the petition if members wish to sign is as follows:-
BBC Royal Charter White Paper
A MAJOR OVERHAUL OF HOW BBC IS RUN announced this morning by Culture Secretary John Whittingdale.
Visit www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-36276570 to discover what the changes are.
BBCPA AGM 2016
The BBCPA AGM was held on 21st April at Friends Meeting House, Euston London. A full house also heard BBC Trustee Richard Ayre speak on the BBC and Charter Review. His address called 'The BBC: Past, Present and Then?' linked his experience of the BBC, Ofcom and other organisations to his appointment to the Trust in 2010 and the likely replacement of the Trust under the new Charter.
Members with an interest in hearing his speech and the AGM proceedings are invited to listen to an audio recording, to be found under the heading AGM Recordings in the Members area of the website. This will be more generally released in due course, together with a written summary.
The Members area is password-protected. Please see your Annual Newsletter and previous BBCPA communications for details, or email the Membership Secretary, Maurice Maguire, for a reminder: firstname.lastname@example.org
BBC Charter Review public consultation
The Government's Summary of Responses to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport Consultation (March 2016) has now been published on the Government's website. See the link on the News page.
BBCPA Regional Meetings
Each October the Association holds 2 or 3 meetings outside London. We are currently arranging these. Please check the Regional Meetings page to find out more.
At the April 2015 AGM, copies of a short report called SKY HIGH! were made available, which compared the cost of viewing free-to-air television with the cost of a subscription account for pay-TV. Now updated, it sets out many of the reasons why the licence fee which pays for the BBC is such good value, particularly when the typical cost of SKY subscription is taken into account.
This report comes at a crucial time for the BBC. The next Royal Charter is due to take effect in 2016 and is inextricably linked to the licence fee, which has already been frozen at £145.50 for six years since 2010. Not only frozen, but with more demands placed on the BBC's budget, such as the funding of the World Service and S4C.
The report previously published in the Members section of this web site is now available to all - read Sky High! here.
Pensioner Nominated Trustee
In the recent election for a Pensioner Nominated Trustee of the BBC Pension Scheme, Leslie Huss-Smickler received the majority votes and so will be appointed a trustee of the scheme. Leslie is a committee member of the BBC Pensioners' Association. Nils Blythe was the runner up. Read more...
Beware of Pension scams
Pension scams are on the increase in the UK. ‘One-off pension investments’, ‘pension loans’ or up front cash are being used to entice savers. Read more on The Pension Regulator web site - Dangers of pension scams.
Some confusion has arisen recently over the discount that members of the BBC Pensioners' Association can obtain on Radio Times and other BBC magazine titles.
Immediate Media the new owners of BBC Magazines have now clarified the situation. Members of the Association who take out a direct debit will be charged £26 for 26 editions of RT posted to their home address. This represents a substantial saving on the shop price and more than covers the annual subscription to the Association. Those members who already receive Radio Times will continue on the old tariff until further notice.
To take advantage of the discount you will need to quote a code which is contained in the most recent copy of the Newsletter or can be obtained by emailing the Membership Secretary email@example.com
Rona Fairhead's speech to the RTS
BBC Trust chair's first speech in her new role reveals her initial observations from four months in the job and sets out how the corporation should address the challenges it faces.
The speech delivered 4th Feb 2015 was entitled 'Confident and connected - A BBC fit for the future'.