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24,000 Retirees See Pensions Restored Through Biden’s American Rescue Plan

Huge victory for 24,000 CWAers through the American Rescue Plan! On June 11th CWA Secretary-Treasurer Ameenah Salaam and District 1 Vice President Dennis Trainor joined the White House to announce that 24,000 CWA Retirees will see their pensions restored through President Biden’s American Rescue Plan.

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) approved the CWA/ITU Negotiated Pension Plan’s application for special financial assistance, ensuring that more than 24,000 workers and retirees will receive the full pension benefits that they earned through a lifetime of work. PBGC will award over $545 million to the CWA/ITU Negotiated Pension plan, which has nearly 24,300 participants nationwide. Without this grant, the plan was projected to become insolvent by 2029, which would have destroyed the retirement security of hard-working union members represented by CWA.

“No one should ever have to worry about cuts to their hard-earned retirement, especially through no fault of our own,” said VP Trainor. “But unfortunately, this is happening again and again in corporate America. Ensuring that workers and our families enjoy the retirement security they earned through a lifetime of work is a central part of President Biden’s economic plan - and I’m proud to have been part of this announcement alongside some of our biggest champions in Congress, Representatives Andy Kim and Donald Norcross of New Jersey.”

The “Butch Lewis Act,” named after a heroic Ohio union leader and pension advocate, is a crucial part of the American Rescue Act; so far, the Biden Administration has announced over $36 billion in funding for the Central States Pension Fund, preventing drastic cuts to the hard-earned pensions of over 350,000 union workers and retirees. This is the largest-ever award of federal financial support for worker and retiree pension security.

Victories like this can only happen when we work together and stand together - and when we have a pro-worker administration willing to fight for workers.

Watch clips from the press conference here.