BCBT Unions' Pension Plans
British Columbia and Yukon Territory Building and Construction Trade Unions have a deep and compassionate interest in the welfare of retired construction workers. The heavy work involved in the industry takes its toll on the body. Many construction workers (union and non-union) suffer from broken and tired bodies after decades of construction work.
Construction union pension plans have been in place since the 1960's and have developed since that time. Today, affiliates of the BCBT manage over $1.7 billion in investments and assets for the benefit of our membership. All BCBT pension plans are subject to compliance with regulations and practices as stipulated by the Pensions Standards Act of the Province of British Columbia.
Pension benefits vary according to each union. Normal retirement age also varies (from 60-65) depending on the union. Most affiliate unions allow for early retirement (usually at 55) with reduced benefits. In all the 16 affiliate unions to the Building Trades Council currently provide pension benefits to just over 10,000 retired workers and their families. There are also some 185 workers drawing disability pensions from their respective unions. Finally, another 600 beneficiaries draw survivor benefits. In all there are almost 11,000 beneficiaries across the province.
BCBT unions pay out over $8,000,000 per month in pension benefits. Annually this works out to $96 million in pension benefits to approximately 11,000 beneficiaries.
Almost all BCBT affiliate union pensions are classed as defined benefit plans. Employers make contributions, on behalf of employees, to the plan (the average contribution for BCYT-BCTC union members is $3 per hour worked). In the case of some unions, plan members are entitled to make additional self contributions to the plan. Pension benefits are established at a sustainable rate as determined by the trustees of each pension plan. Trustees are obligated to provide the Pension Standards Branch (a provincial government agency) with annual statements and actuarial reports of their plans' solvency. The PSB ensures that benefit rates are sustainable and that the pension plans are run with solvency in mind.
For further details about BCBT pension plans please contact the pension administrator for the specific affiliate union that represents your craft (see right).