Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/907/23068
BHS pensions insult
Caroline Vincent, retail worker
Some 20,000 members of the BHS pension scheme are concerned to find their pensions from the failed firm are now in the Pension Protection Fund, meaning they will receive less than expected.
Working in retail can be stressful and demanding, so won't someone spare a thought for Sir Philip Green? Sure, he may be responsible for the collapse of BHS, but at least he's trying to sort out a "better outcome" for the pensions mess he created.
When asked whether members would receive the pensions due, he simply said he'll give it his "best shot." How reassuring!
Like a lot of retail workers, Sir Philip has suffered ill health, even having to go so far as to relocate following a heart scare. Luckily he managed to find a suitable climate to recuperate - sunny Monaco! Any tax benefits are purely incidental.
Many retail staff are the victims of workplace bullying, and Sir Philip will be able to empathise. He feels that he has been hounded and victimised at the hands of MPs, who have been asking him some difficult questions. For instance, just how rich did he make himself while wrecking the livelihoods of some 11,000 BHS workers?
Yes, Sir Philip may be having a hard time at the moment, but at least he can take comfort in the £400 million that he extracted from the company before selling it on for £1. BHS staff and pensioners, on the other hand, face an uncertain future.
The Socialist Party has called for nationalisation as the only way to save both the jobs and the pensions. Business magazine Forbes estimated Sir Philip's net worth as £3.3 billion in 2015 - that should do the trick.
In The Socialist 22 June 2016:
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