Member Update: Public Service Pension Plan
Member Update: Public Service Pension Plan (PSPP)
As an Ambulance Paramedic in CUPE Local 873, you are automatically enrolled in BC’s Public Service Pension Plan. Your pension plan is recognized throughout Canada as one that provides outstanding value and helps its members build secure and dependable retirement incomes.
Here are five key things to know about your pension plan:
1. Your basic pension is guaranteed to be paid for your lifetime. As a defined benefit pension plan, your pension is based on a formula—not just on how much you have contributed. Using the personalized pension estimator in My Account, you can estimate what your monthly pension income could be. This information helps you build your overall retirement income strategy.
2. The Employer contributes to your pension with every pay cheque. Every time you contribute to your pension, the Employer contributes, too. Part of the Employer’s contribution goes into an inflation adjustment account to fund annual inflation adjustments when you retire. Annual inflation adjustments are not guaranteed, but once granted, they become part of your basic lifetime pension benefit.
3. Plan investments are professionally managed. Contributions to the plan are pooled and invested by the British Columbia Investment Management Corporation, known as BCI. Investing is important: approximately 75 cents of every pension dollar paid to retirees comes from plan investment returns. BCI’s investment strategy aims to keep the plan financially secure and defensively positioned against changing market conditions.
4. The Public Service Pension Board of Trustees governs the plan. The board includes representatives from both the Employer and the Union, and they work together to ensure the plan remains strong and sustainable. Every three years the plan undergoes a rigorous valuation to get a full picture of the plan’s financial health. The latest valuation determined the plan is fully funded and sustainable.
5. You have support on every step of your pension journey. Whether you are a brand-new plan member or just starting to think about retirement, the Public Service Pension Plan offers many ways for you to learn more about your pension so you can plan your best retirement. Expert staff are ready through the secure Message Centre on My Account or by phone to answer any questions you have.
Learn about your pension today
Visit the Public Service Pension Plan website to access learning guides, webinars and more. Sign in to My Account to review your personal details, update your beneficiary information and use the personalized pension estimator to see how different retirement ages may affect your future pension. Visit the Public Service Pension Plan at pspp.pensionsbc.ca
Online courses and webinars
In an hour or less you can learn how to make the most of your pension whether you are just starting your career or approaching retirement. If you want more support, you can register for a free webinar led by a pension instructor. Start here: pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/online-courses-and-webinars
Guide for new plan members
Learn how the plan works. This guide explains how your pension is calculated, when you can retire and more: https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/guide-for-new-members
Understanding your annual member benefit statement
You will receive an annual member’s benefit statement every year. Your current and past statements are available in My Account. Understanding your statements can help guide your retirement decisions: https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/understand-your-member-benefit-statement
Ambulance Paramedics have different early retirement ages than other public servants. Learn more: https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/early-retirement-for-ambulance-paramedics
Planning for retirement
This guide walks you through everything you need to think about as you start your retirement-planning process: https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/planning-for-retirement
Your pension and your children
Your pension is a family asset. Learn about your considerations as a parent: https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/time-for-a-minivan-your-pension-and-your-children
Separation and divorce
There are pension considerations when you separate from or divorce your spouse. This article explains what you need to know: https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/ending-a-relationship-and-what-it-means-for-your-pension
If your spouse dies
The death of a spouse can be a very stressful time. Learn what steps to take regarding your pension: https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/tell-us-if-your-spouse-dies
Contact the Public Service Pension Plan
Need to get in touch? Contact the plan through Message Centre or by telephone: https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/ca/contact-us
Local 873 Public Service Pension Plan Committee
Under the CUPE Local 873 Bylaws (15. b13) – APBC has an advisory committee (Local 873 Public Service Pension Plan Committee) that has three members who attend the Public Service Pension Plan Committee Advisory Committee (PSPPAC) [PSPPAC Terms of Reference] which is made up of all non BCGEU (plan Partner) constituent Unions and elects two Trustees to the PSPBT Board https://pspp.pensionsbc.ca/publicservice-pension-plan
Local 873 Public Service Pension Plan Committee Members:
• Tim Lehman Timothy.Lehman@apbc.ca
• Melissa Hanlser Melissa.Hanlser@apbc.ca
Bylaw 15. b13 – Local 873 Public Service Pension Plan Committee
At least three members shall be elected at Convention for three-year terms.
(a) At Convention 2001, one member shall be elected for one year, one member shall be elected for two years and one member shall be elected for three years.
(b) At least one member shall be from the part time ranks.
(c) One member shall be elected by the Committee members to be the Chair for a year.
(d) The Committee shall meet as needed to discuss Public Service Pension Plan issues.
(e) At least one member of the Committee shall attend the public service pension plan advisory committee
(f) The Committee shall help inform our members on matters of the Public Service Pension Plan and act as advocates for our members on Pension issues.
(g) The Committee through the Chair should report to Convention and shall undertake special projects as directed by the Provincial Executive Committee or Board.
On behalf of the Executive Board and the APBC – Local 873 Public Service Pension Plan Committee.
Troy Clifford, President
Ambulance Paramedics & Emergency Dispatchers of BC
CUPE Local 873
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