To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions his Department plans to have with the Scottish Government in relation to its plan to transfer retired officers of the Scottish Division of British Transport Police into a new pension scheme after the proposed merger of that division into Police Scotland.
11 September 2018
The UK aspects of the process to implement the devolution of the British Transport Police’s functions in Scotland to Police Scotland, including pensions issues is led by the Department for Transport.
The Department for Transport has been working closely with Scottish Government and relevant stakeholders, including employee representative organisations, to develop the pension’s proposal for the proposed transfer of the Scottish Division of British Transport Police. This has been principally through the Joint Programme Board, which has had an extensive process of engagement with affected stakeholders, including representatives of retired officers.
The key principles of the pension transfer has always been that pensions will be transferred on an “as is” basis, meaning that affected officers and staff will transfer with their existing terms and conditions intact. Pensions payable to retired officers will continue to be administered by the RPMI and will be paid in full.
However, the Scottish Government announced on 27 August 2018 that it has decided to consider other options to deliver the devolution of railway policing. The UK Government will continue to play an important part in this process to ensure that UK interests are properly reflected. Until this process has been concluded the details around any transfer arrangements, including pensions, will not be further progressed as the Scottish Government consider the approach to be adopted. In doing so, the Scottish Government has been clear that it will engage with all affected stakeholders.