As you will be aware, in 2015 the Government introduced reformed pension schemes across all the main public service workforces. The reforms included a policy of transitional protection that meant members closest to their Normal Pension Age stayed in their legacy schemes. The Court of Appeal later found this transitional protection to be discriminatory against younger members in the judicial and firefighters’ pension schemes. Ministers accepted that the judgment had implications for the other schemes including the police pension scheme, as they contained similar transitional arrangements.
I do welcome the fact that the Government has been working to address the discrimination. As part of this, the Government has announced that affected members will receive a ‘deferred choice’ of which pension schemes benefits they would prefer to take at the point they retire, and this will apply across the majority of the main public service pension schemes.
I would recommend accessing the Government's extensive guidance and explanation regarding the Bill and the changes. You can find it at the following link - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/public-service-pensions-and-judicial-offices-bill/guidance-on-the-public-service-pensions-and-judicial-offices-bill.
I know how concerning issues relating to pensions can be and I know that the Government is committed to ensuring that public service pensions are fair to both workers and taxpayers. I think it is important to consider the changes in a wider context. With better healthcare and improved lifestyles, the average 60-year-old is expected to live 10 years longer than they did in the 1970s. This clearly has an impact on the cost of providing public service pensions. It is also the case that a fair balance must be achieved between what employees contribute to their own pensions and what other taxpayers pay. If this is not achieved, taxpayers will be paying for pensions they would not even hope to receive themselves for generations in the future.