Morrisons is to consult with staff on the closure of its defined benefit (DB) pension schemes.
The retailer’s proposed changes would mean that members of its career average revalued earnings (Care) schemes would stop building up benefits through that scheme. Benefits already accrued by staff will remain in the scheme until tnese are drawn upon.
Morrisons is also proposing to offer all affected employees membership of its Retirement Saver Plan through which they will be able to build up further pension benefits.
This is a cash balance pension arrangement, which will provide employees with a guaranteed pension pot at retirement, with risk shared between the organisation and the employee.
Joanne McGuinness, national officer at the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers (USDAW), said: “There is a legal requirement for Morrisons to enter into a meaningful consultation with Usdaw regarding this change to pension provision and we are currently in the process of agreeing a timetable for discussions.
“We will consider in full the organisation’s business case, and Usdaw’s priority will be to maintain good pension provision for all Morrisons staff.”
Emily Lawson, group HR director for Morrisons, said: “This proposal is intended to provide fairer pensions benefits to all [employees], ensuring that those doing the same role primarily have access to the same benefits.
“These are only proposals at this stage. Before any final decisions are made we will be entering into a consultation process with affected colleagues and their representatives.”
The move follows other high-profile pension changes in the retail sector, after Tesco closed its DB scheme and John Lewis Partnership reviewed its DB and defined contribution pension arrangements.