Gary Cox, an ex-miner from Deal, has met with me to raise concerns over the miner's pension scheme after former coal workers in Dover and Deal told me they are getting a rotten deal.
I really think this needs to be looked at. A lot has changed since the pensions deal was struck more than two decades ago. Miners worked incredibly hard in tough conditions and they deserve dignity in retirement.
Hundreds of ex-miners live in the Dover and Deal area which is home to Kent's coalfields in villages like Tilmanstone and Betteshanger. I am proud of our coal-producing heritage, as well as the work we have done to bring that to life with regeneration projects like in Betteshanger.
As a member of the Public Accounts Committee, I will be writing to the committee chairman to ask for an inquiry into this matter – and asking to lead it. I have also written to Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Damian Green MP, and invited Mr Cox and several other ex-miners to the House of Commons for further talks.
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