Contributions still being accepted. Thank You!

 

Your Continued Support

In January 2014 the Shared Risk Pension Plan was imposed illegally by the then Alward/Higgs government on retirees of the former PSSA pension plan and public sector workers. Six years later, there are three (3) legal challenge files against the government - our former employer. Pension Coalition NB filed first it's constitutional challenge, followed by a second case alleging breach of contract and trust, non-representation by certain unions by Guy Levesque both arguing for retirees’ rights and then the unions representing PIPSC - Professional institute of the Public Service of Canada and CUPE - Canadian Union of Public Employees.

We draw your attention to legal fees paid by the Office of the Attorney General in two fiscal years 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 against the proponents of the 3 legal cases cited above.  This information was obtained through a Right to Information Request.

2016-2017

Kennedy et al v HMQ New Brunswick       $200,298.96

Levesque v PNB et al                                    $531,513.89

PIPSC and CUPE v PNB                                 $562,911.57

2017-2018

Kennedy et al v HMQ New Brunswick       $  31,497.90

Levesque v PNB et al                                    $297,436.76

PIPSC and CUPE v PNB                                 $477,619.27

We know through additional Right to Information Requests that in excess of 23 lawyers and administration support staff are assigned to fight these legal cases, thus the gravity of these ‎challenges. Supplementary fees have been paid in 2019 by the taxpayers of this province as well as various appellants parties. Seeking justice in New Brunswick appears to be a marathon even though it has been slowed by the government’s continuous stall tactics. Having said this, we want to assure everyone that progress has been made and we are very encouraged. We know of the ground breaking importance of these cases and we will not be deterred. 

Latest Legal News

A new lawyer, Mr Gavin Giles, senior partner with the firm McInnis‎ Cooper in Halifax was recently retained by Pension Coalition NB, Guy Levesque and 9 CUPE locals who are not signatories to the Shared Risk Pension Plan since its inception. Mr. Giles has a very interesting profile and has advocated successfully for many social causes and non-profit groups over the years. Mr. Giles replaces Mr. Pete Mockler of Mockler Corporation, who passed away suddenly last Fall after a few years of dedicated service on the Levesque file. Three (3) full days of hearings have been set aside by Judge Hugh MacLellan for all motions filed by each PNB (Province of New Brunswick), Vestcor the defendant Trustees and the Defendant Unions to be heard on June 22, 23 and 24, 2020. Should our lawyer Mr. Giles wish to proceed to amend his pleadings (which we support) or seek other relief, he must file and serve appropriate documentation including a written brief on law on or before June 1, 2020.  Further, if any Defendant wishes to file a further brief ‎or other materials in response to filings made by the plaintiff, they shall file by June 15, 2020.


Indexation and Market Conditions 

Markets have been kind to pension funds in recent years but will this continue indefinitely? ‎The SRP is subject to market conditions and as you know the government guarantee was eliminatedWhat is egregious about the SRP is that the current government does not recognize "vested pension benefits". These are clearly recognized by our Canadian Constitution. Although it looks to many like a long battle, it is our view that this Government is not above the law, thus our resolve to continue this battle for retirees. 

The recent stock markets sell-off during the last week of February 2020 (due to concerns over Coronavirus) will not bode well for pension plans’ funded status come next January, when the required Actuarial Valuation must be performed to determine whether or not the pension fund can support any further indexation, or indeed, support the indexation received to date from the SRP imposition, January 1, 2014..  We can only hope, that in the months to come, markets rebound, and rebound significantly.

Call for $$ Support

The Coalition is calling again for your financial support to allow us to continue our quest for justice on your behalf. We currently have some unpaid legal obligations that we need to clear ‎immediately and continue our legal challenge past June 2020. Our legal fund is very close to being depleted and your support is necessary for us to continue. 

May we remind you that your contribution is fully tax deductible and the Coalition will issue official tax receipts for contribution upon request. May we suggest a contribution of $100 or more if you can manage it, however any amount is much appreciated. Please make your cheque or money order payable to Pension Coalition NB and mail to PO Box 3021, Fredericton NB E3A 5G8 or go to our website to donate through PayPal at  https://www.pensioncoalitionnb.ca/

Thank you for the support you have given your Steering Committee over the past 6 years. With your help, we will forge ahead on your behalf and report back to you after the court appearances in June.

Pension Coalition NB