AFTER a long four year campaign, Stephen Metcalfe, MP for South Basildon and East Thurrock, is celebrating victory for the Visteon Pensioners as Ford enter into constructive and binding talks with the view to settle claims for losses with a multi million pound deal in the very near future.
Joined by colleagues across the House, Mr Metcalfe has been tirelessly campaigning for Ford to honour their moral responsibilities to their former employees who suffered pension losses of up to 50% when Visteon UK collapsed in 2009 after being was spun off from Ford in 2000. The All Party Parliamentary Group in support of Visteon pensioners, chaired by Mr Metcalfe, have held debates in the House of Commons on the matter, made representations to the Government, attended demonstrations, and have supported the Visteon Pension Action Group (VPAG) in the fight for their pensions.
Up to this point Ford washed their hands of responsibility for the pensioners, claiming that Visteon was its own company, responsible for its own decisions. Now, to the delight of Visteon pensioners up and down the country, Ford has agreed in principle to do the right thing and settle the claim.
VPAG, who have been ardently campaigning on this issue, are said to be delighted by the news and were praised in the House of Commons by Stephen Metcalfe MP for their dogged determination.
Mr Metcalfe commented: “I am delighted to hear that Ford are living up to their responsibilities and doing the right thing. This is fantastic news for VPAG and for Visteon pensioners across the UK and I would like to congratulate VPAG for their hard fought campaign. Their dogged determination has resulted in a well earned victory and I know that the people they represent will be forever grateful for their efforts.”
“I would like to thank colleagues from across the House for joining me in this fight. Geraint Davies MP, Sian James MP and many others have been relentless in campaigning for their constituents and this cross party effort has shown democracy working at its finest.”
Stephen added: “I would also like to thank Ford for honouring their responsibilities. By righting this wrong, they have restored their proud reputation for looking after their workers and I look forward to working with them in the future as they continue to make an invaluable contribution to the national economy, and our local economy in Basildon.”