The RSEA was first set up to meet concerns from several pensioners who felt that there should be a collective voice for retired public servants in dealing with the States as their former employer and that there should be a consultation process before each annual review of pensions. They were also concerned about the basis of those reviews, about whether or not pensions were safeguarded and about communications with pensioners.
The Association held its first Annual General Meeting on 27th July 1994 when Peter Rabey (ex Police) was elected as Chairman, Richard Mauger (ex Fire Brigade) as Secretary, Basil Sheriff (ex Income Tax) as Treasurer and Ron Jenner (ex States Works), Bernard Mann (ex Civil Service Board) and Jo Williams (ex Board of Health) as Committee Members. The objects of the Association were, and remain today, “to safeguard the rights of members and to promote measures for their welfare, with particular regard to pensions”. While individual unions or staff associations had, and continue to have, their own groups for retired members, until the proposal to form the RSEA, there was no coordinated representation on behalf of PSPS pensioners.
An occupational pension scheme in some form or other for public servants has been in existence in Guernsey since 1913. Rules have been approved by the States from time to time and have been amended on several occasions, most recently in 2016. In 1963, the States considered the liabilities being incurred under the 1948 Rules then in operation and resolved to establish, from 1st January 1965, a Superannuation Fund to meet those liabilities.
In 1985, the States appointed Peat Marwick Mitchell (PMM) to review the operation of the 1972 States Employees’ Pension Scheme. The States considered their report and proposals from the then Civil Service Board (CSB) in 1988. PMM had noted that there “are no formal consultation procedures laid down in the 1972 Pension Scheme” and concluded that these “should be set up so that employee representatives are regularly consulted on pension matters”. The CSB recommended to the States “that a Pensions Consultative Committee be established comprising the President and Members of the Board and five representatives of the members of the scheme to be appointed in accordance with agreed procedures. The Pensions Consultative Committee would discuss pension matters affecting members of the scheme as distinct from matters which are the responsibility of the Advisory and Finance Committee”.
Since 1996, the RSEA has had a seat in the Pensions Consultative Committee and the latest PSPS Rules, approved by the States in February 2016, have consolidated this position. Rule 16.3 makes specific provision for the PCC to “… be constituted as agreed by the [States of Guernsey] from time to time with equal numbers of representatives nominated by the [Policy & Resources] Committee and members nominated by the Association of States Employees’ Organisations and one additional Member nominated by the Retired States Employees’ Association.”
The RSEA is an active participant within the ASEO and will continue to represent the interests of its current Members in that forum and at the PCC. The RSEA holds an Annual General Meeting each April to discuss matters of general or specific interest and to elect a Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer, other Committee Members and Auditors.
Information about the current Committee Members is available here.