UK Union Claims Harrods is Strike Target

March 13, 2006 ( - UK's Amicus Union has warned department store Harrods that it could be hit with a "damaging" strike over not properly consulting with workers before closing its pension plan.

The union, which represents 100 members at Harrods, has accused the store of replacing the existing final salary pension with an “inferior money purchase scheme,” according to an news report.

For its part, Harrods insisted it has been involved in consultations and remains “fully committed to the individual one on one consultation process so that our employees can be best advised on their future pension planning needs.”

Harrods last month announced its decision to shut its final salary plan to new and existing members in April, and open up a defined contribution program (See Harrods joins UK DB to DC Trend ). The scheme deficit stands at £95m, according to the IPE report.

However, the union continues to insist that pension officials have turned away their negotiation requests.
“Amicus has put forward a number of alternative proposals which would address the deficit and maintain a decent pension for staff, but to date Harrods has refused to negotiate with the union and plans to impose the new scheme in April,” said a union statement released Monday .