UK - Smaller schemes are threatening to quit the National Association of Pension Funds and set up a breakaway group unless they get better representation.
Disgruntled scheme managers claim the NAPF is dominated by large schemes and has little idea about the admin problems smaller ones face.
They also believe the NAPF does not reflect their interests and point out its benefits committee is made up entirely of consultants and large defined benefit scheme members.
Barnardo’s pension scheme manager Graham Brown said: “The NAPF does not represent the vast majority of its membership. We haven’t got the financial resources of the NAPF, but if it doesn’t listen, it could end up with us at the smaller end withdrawing our membership – and we’re the vast majority.
“They may still represent the big players, but at the end of the day, are governments going to listen to someone who represents hundreds of schemes or someone that represents the many thousands?”
Brown, who is currently standing for election to the NAPF council, said if he is elected, he will try to effect change from within and bring a “proper perspective” to the association.
EMAP group benefits manager Ralph Turner said that unless the NAPF takes action to redress the balance away from larger schemes, it will result in the formation of a breakaway faction and he would “seriously consider” joining it.
He added: “The NAPF has to take this seriously.
“It can’t keep ignoring the issue. What it is doing is saying it reflects everybody, but what it actually does in practice is reflect the major DB players.”
But NAPF chief executive Christine Farnish insisted the association did represent smaller schemes.
She said: “We are keen to focus on the needs of small and medium-sized schemes, whether DB, DC or others, and I am visiting NAPF local groups around the country to discuss how we can develop our services further.”
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