Chartered Insurance Institute  

CII calls for pension reform in gender equality push

CII calls for pension reform in gender equality push

The Chartered Insurance Institute has called on the government to reform the threshold for automatic enrolment and require employers to include pension contributions in their gender pay gap reporting.  

The calls have been made as part of a manifesto published by the professional body yesterday (November 19) in which it called on the government, regulators and the wider industry to help women improve their financial futures. 

The campaign, labelled Insuring Women's Futures, included a number of recommendations and followed three years of research across the financial services industry. 

The CII recommended employer pension contributions be included in a company's gender pay gap reporting, in light of data suggesting women aged 25 will accumulate a pension worth 20 per cent less than a man's over a period of 40 years. 

The manifesto warned without intervention it could take until 2100 for an 18 year old woman to achieve pension equality. 

Sian Fisher, chair of Insuring Women’s Futures and chief executive of the CII, said: "We know some of the issues needing to be addressed are deep-rooted and will take time to have full effect.

"We need to empower people to come together to talk about their financial life."

The professional body also called for reforms to the eligibility thresholds for automatic enrolment, warning the current rules meant 75 per cent of employees not eligible for the initiative were women. 

Only workers earning more than £10,000 will be automatically enrolled into a workplace pension by their employers. 

The CII's research found 50 per cent of part-time workers earned less than £10,000 and more than 81 per cent of them were women. 

Other recommendations included calls for pension sharing to be the default position in divorce proceedings, amid warnings only 18 per cent of divorces currently include that measure and married men's pensions were five times that of married women. 

Keith Richards, chief executive of the Personal Finance Society, said: "The PFS has pledged to engage policymakers on the change required and recommendations stemming from the latest IWF work, in particular regarding the retirement provision deficiencies.

"It is time to better engage everyone in how to take charge of their financial future."

rachel.mortimer@ft.com 

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