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Originally published in the Schenectady Gazette: November 5, 2018
Someone has to speak against cuts
The news regarding former St. Clare’s employees is indeed disturbing. Current retirees over the age of 62 will receive benefits at a reduced rate beginning in February 2019, while workers under the age of 62 will receive no benefits.
Such a worker could conceivably have 40 years of service and will get nothing.
Former St. Clare’s workers are real people, with families and obligations. They are a strong part of the community.
It’s very sad to have them treated in such a manner. St. Clare’s situation was created over time by underfunding its responsibility to provide sufficient funds for future retirement obligations.
Not long ago, General Electric cut its retiree benefits, not because of insufficient funds, but in its quest for even higher corporate profits.
While the reasons are vastly different, the end result is the same for current and future retirees, namely bad.
The Retired Public Employees Association spoke out against the GE retiree cuts, and we are doing so again for St. Clare retirees.
Someone has to.
The writer is the president of the Retired Public Employees Association.