Retirees and former employees of Fraser Papers who have already endured massive cuts to their pensions will meet with New Brunswick's Justice and Consumer Affairs minister today to voice their concern about further planned reductions.
Marie-Claude Blais will speak with union representatives and retirees about the move to cut up to 12 per cent from pensions. The move comes after unionized employees made the difficult decision earlier this year to chop benefits by almost one third to make up for the underfunded plan.
Conrad Pelletier, a spokesman for an association representing Fraser's retirees, said the change is going to hit his members hard. For instance, he said, an employee who was receiving $1,000 a month before the company went bankrupt is now getting just $690.
"We want to know why the Superintendent of Pensions is cutting our pensions," he said.
Pension plan members in Edmundston, Plaster Rock and Atholville are to meet with trustees of the pension plan next week.
"We want to know what's going on," Pelletier said.
Canadian pensioners have reason to feel especially hard hit after they look at the preferable outcome for their colleagues in neighbouring Madawaska, Maine.
Fraser employees and retirees who worked at the American paper plant, which is linked to the Edmundston pulp mill through a series of pipes, have had their pensions protected by an American federal corporation.
Source: Global Paper Trade