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A MESSAGE TO NEW ENGLAND TEAMSTERS REGARDING TODAY’S BOSTON GLOBE STORY
Today, The Boston Globe unleashed another inaccurate story on the New England Teamsters Pension Fund. Before publication the reporter did not contact the Fund and ask for its comment and response. We have since spoken to the reporter and he has committed to fixing the inaccuracies.
The article was based on a report by Cheiron Consulting, an actuarial company who has not worked with the New England Teamsters Pension Fund for several years. Additionally, the article inaccurately claimed that the Fund was facing insolvency by 2027. This is not true and is not supported by any filing with the Department of Labor.
There is no doubt, pension funds across the country face troubles. This is not due to mismanagement or corruption. Instead the pension crisis has its roots in decades of anti-worker Congressional lawmaking. From trucking deregulation to business-friendly bankruptcy laws that have allowed companies including the Globe’s sister, The Boston Herald, to exit the Fund and abandon financial responsibility.
But the New England Fund is not looking to blame politicians and greedy corporations or their media mouthpieces. We’re also not banking on a congressional solution finding its way through an anti-worker U.S. Congress.
Immediately following the 2008 market crash, the Fund took progressive steps to fix the problem to ensure that our members continue to have a secure retirement. The New England Pension Fund has nearly 400 participating employers and is managed by professional money managers and jointly guided by a board of four union trustees and four management trustees. It is independent of the Teamsters union and the various employers and managed solely in the interests in its participants
The Fund has:
1. Created a hybrid plan that allows new employers enter the plan and not be subject to withdrawal liability.
2. Transferred more than 72 percent of the legacy employers (like UPS, DHL, Stop & Shop) into hybrid plan. The hybrid plan allows employers to start paying off their withdrawal liability thus shielding them from future withdrawal liability while protecting the accruals of our members.
3. Organized thousands of new members into the union and successfully negotiated them into the hybrid plan. More than 60 new employers have joined the New England Fund since 2010. This is unheard in the pension world and no other Teamster pension plan in the country can match this record of growth.
4. Current employers are committed to the Fund. Nothing speaks louder than UPS’s long-term commitment to the Fund. As a result of successful regional negotiations in 2012 UPS agreed to pay $2.1 billion of withdrawal liability and enter the hybrid plan. The successful 2018 supplemental negotiations further increased the plan’s funding and added an additional $100 million annually for the life the agreement.
The New England Teamsters only goal is the security of our members and participants. We will continue to fight hard for members and retirees.