Eastwood MP supports miners’ petition for fairer pensions

Eastwood’s MP has thrown her support behind calls for a fairer deal for former miners and their widows.

Gloria De Piero, Labour MP for Eastwood, said she would sign an Early Day Motion calling for the government to enter negotiations over the mineworkers pension scheme.

Former miners outside 10 Downing Street after handing over a 100,000 name petition.

Former miners outside 10 Downing Street after handing over a 100,000 name petition.

It comes as ex-miners from Mansfield, Ashfield and the wider Nottinghamshire area submitted a petition with more than 100,000 names on it, calling for a better deal to the pension scheme.

Ms De Piero said she thinks the miners have been treated “unfairly” and has pledged her backing to the campaign.

She said: “I have been campaigning for a fairer pension for ex-miners and their widows for several years now, because it is simply not fair that the Government pockets billions of pounds from the scheme arrangement while many pensioners struggle to make ends meet.

“I have been working with the trustees of the scheme, the National Union of Mineworkers and other Labour MPs, to make a case for new pension arrangements which would see the profits from miners’ pension investments split in a much fairer way.

“It is vital we continue to press for change as this has been going on for far too long.”

The petition calls for a review of the mineworkers’ pension arrangements for more than 150,000 former mineworkers and widows.

They say they have been “robbed” of billions which has been siphoned off by successive governments following an agreement to underwrite the pension in the 1990s.

The UK Miners Pension Scheme, for Justice & Fair Play Association is campaigning to get the 50-50 split of pension surplus renegotiated.

After handing in the petition, representative and former Thoresby miner Mick Newton said: “We commenced this petition just more than three years ago and we have now got more than 100,000 signatures on the paper petition, not online.

“People are fed up of seeing their pensions being creamed off by the Government through this so called 50-50 guarantee and they want something done.

“We’ve handed the petition over to Number 10, but are going to continue with the petition and the campaign.

“We know the coalfield communities, the mining villages, they are watching.

“And on their behalf we have to continue and keep up the pressure and continue the resistance, and persist at all costs to get them a better deal.”