Fredericton CUPE NB has filed an appeal of the Government’s refusal to disclose actuarial documents surrounding the public sector pension plan benefits promised under the new “Shared Risk” model. Documents will permit CUPE NB to evaluate the claims government made about the security of the model.

“Government has forced us to leave our defined benefit plan to take the Shared Risk model in 2013. However, this new plan has no real security and government won’t even show its validation of the plan” said CUPE President Daniel Légère.

“Since March 2016, the Privacy Commissioner sides with CUPE to have government provide the documents to CUPE.  However, the government refuses to comply,” said Légère.

“The Pension Benefits Act protects plan members’ right to documents about their pension plan.  Why is the government fighting so hard to not provide this basic information to plan members, despite a promise to discuss the issue in a transparent way?” questioned Légère.

In 2015, CUPE released a third-party actuarial study that showed using slightly different actuarial assumptions about future asset returns lead to drastically different results. The government’s numbers showed – in their words – “less than a 2.5% chance” that pensions would be cut. However, the numbers in in the CUPE study showed nearly a 30% chance that pensions would be cut in the future.

“The “Shared Risk” legislation requires that the actuarial models of the plan must show certain degrees of likelihood that plan benefits, while not guaranteed, will be delivered. Beneficiaries of the PSSRP should be granted full review and disclosure of these models, their assumptions, and the basis for the Superintendent’s approval of that model, in order to assess the benefit security they have in their pension entitlements.” said Mark Janson, CUPE National Senior Pensions Officer.