Honeywell's UK staff mull strike action

Final salary scheme to be axed

UK employees of multinational Honeywell are considering strike action over the closure of their final salary pension scheme.

The Unite union has started balloting its 1,100 members across the UK today in a consultative ballot for industrial action. The ballot closes on Monday October 31.

Honeywell has more than 50 sites across the UK including Basildon; Bournemouth; Leicester; Newhouse, near Motherwell; St Asaph in Wales; Southend; Swansea and Yeovil.

Unite national officer Linda McCulloch said the plan to close the final salary scheme was unnecessary and also the defined contribution scheme was a "woefully inadequate alternative".

She said: “Honeywell likes to pride itself as a corporate global leader of excellence, but its DC and ‘automatic enrolment’ schemes are way below the industry average in terms of company contributions – it is pathetic for such a profitable multinational."

A spokesman from Honeywell said the newer Defined Contribution scheme is already used by three-fourths of its UK employees. "This change only affects future accruals for those employees still on our older DB scheme – it does not impact pension benefits already earned."

He added: "This change is in-line with UK market trends, with approximately half of FTSE 100 companies either having no DB scheme or freezing their DB schemes to future accruals. The DC scheme provides employees with greater flexibility over their pension investments and reduces risk and unpredictability for our business."

In its second-quarter results for the three months to July, the business posted sales of $10bn (£8.2bn), up 2 per cent on the same period last year.

Honeywell will release its third-quarter results next week. ®

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