Monday, 23 August 2010

Open Letter To Kent County Council

Pension SectionKent
County Council,2nd Floor
Brenchley House
Week Street
Kent ME14 1RF


Firefighters Pension Scheme

I am writing on behalf of a constituent regarding your recent letter to them in which they are required to complete a Certificate of Entitlement.

Having read the contents of your letter and listened to my constituent’s concerns, I am concerned that the process of forcing widows and widowers of those who served so bravely in the Fire Service to prove that they are still eligible to receive their pension is, to put it mildly, insensitive.

As my constituent rightly points out, there is already a legal obligation on recipients of widow’s and widower’s pension to declare a change in their circumstances that may affect their entitlement. It therefore strikes me as being inappropriate and unnecessary to force recipients of this pension to declare their eligibility on an annual basis, a procedure which clearly does imply a lack of trust in recipients, notwithstanding your contrary assertion.

I would be grateful if you would give consideration as to how Kent County Council can go about administering this scheme in the future so as to avoid causing further undue distress to my constituent and others who are in a similar position.

I am, because of the importance of this issue to those that I represent, making my concerns known to the Kent media.

Yours sincerely,

Mark Reckless
Member of Parliament for Rochester and Strood

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