Agency staff need good pensions too

15th June 2001 at 01:00
You reported that Education Lecturing Services is drafting a pension plan for part-time agency lecturers (FE Focus, May 25) and that the Association of Teachers and Lecturers is part of the process.

Under the Teachers' Pensions Scheme, which excludes agency lecturers (because they are deemed self-employed), employers must contribute 7.4 per cent of the employee's salary. Given that ELS has promoted itself as a way colleges can cut costs, is it likely that it plans a scheme giing equal benefits to lecturers?

Lower or non-existent employer contributions will result in lower pension benefits to an outcast group of lecturers. Many agency lecturers work the same - or even longer - hours as directly-employed staff. NATFHE says it is time for them to be allowed access to the same quality of pensions as other teachers.

Paul Mackney

General secretary

National Association of Teachers in Further and Higher Education

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