Pension Reform

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Work and Pensions – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 31st October 2005.

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Photo of David Blunkett David Blunkett The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 2:30 pm, 31st October 2005

I appreciate the nature of the question. It is a terrible thing for those who have been so badly affected by the collapse of these schemes. We now have the operation up and running. The unit has received the necessary material from 17 of the schemes, and we sincerely hope that we will be able to make the first payments before Christmas. However, there is also a long-term issue. My Ministers and I have been receiving representations from Members and from those representing previous work forces across the country. We are deeply sympathetic to trying to find a way forward in future.