Agreement reached over Visteon pensions

Agreement reached over Visteon pensions

Five years after the west-Belfast Visteon factory closed, a union representing former staff has said that it has reached an agreement over pension payments with Ford.

Over 200 jobs were lost at the car parts plant when it closed in 2009.Workers, who were given an hour's notice of the closure, staged a seven-week sit-in protest at the facility in a bid to reach an agreement with the factory's former owners Ford over a previous pension agreement.They had claimed that, when Visteon took over the factory in 2000, the motoring giant had promised to give workers Ford-type compensation in the event of redundancy.On Wednesday, the union Unite announced a settlement has been reached to offer compensation to former workers.Unite said it had concluded an agreement with Ford - which includes staff from the factories in Basildon, Essex, Enfield, north London and Swansea, as well as the Belfast site.Unite said in a statement: "Unite has concluded an agreement with Ford to make a settlement offer to eligible ex-Visteon employees who filed legal claims in connection with reductions in their pensions resulting from Visteon UK being put into administration in 2009."The settlement would avoid further expense for participants in the case and will settle the legal claims that these individuals have made against Ford."Unite and Ford have been involved in lengthy but constructive discussions to reach a position where a settlement has been offered."Details of the settlement are confidential and a private matter for those directly involved."Former staff have told UTV they are pleased with the agreement and happy that "five years of stress" appears to have come to an end.The agreement still has to be signed off and put before the former staff for approval - however, it is believed the deal will be approved within the next 10 days.

© UTV

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