Continued pay freeze is mean-spirited gesture says FDA

10 March 2010
For immediate release

The freezing of pay for Senior Civil Servants and senior NHS managers, and the Government's rejection of modest structural changes to the SCS pay arrangements - announced by the Prime Minister today - have been criticised by the FDA. The FDA is the union for senior public servants.

Jonathan Baume, FDA General Secretary, said:

"We recognise the grave fiscal crisis facing the country as public expenditure has spiralled out of control. However, the SCS comprises dedicated senior public servants whose professionalism and dedication will be essential to lifting Britain out of the economic quagmire over the coming years. It is simply untenable for the Government to continue freezing the pay of Senior Civil Servants as a political device year after year.

"The Government has insulted hard working public servants today by rejecting proposals from the independent Senior Salaries Review Body to raise the minimum pay for Senior Civil Servants to address long-standing anomalies. These anomalies have resulted in almost half of all women Senior Civil Servants, and two thirds of Senior Civil Servants from ethnic minority backgrounds, being at the bottom of the SCS pay league and often paid less than staff they are managing. This is a mean-spirited gesture. Yet again a chance to address structural discrimination has been missed. Despite numerous opportunities, the Government has failed to address these long standing equal pay concerns and leaves us no option but to seek alternative means of addressing these.

"We do, however, welcome the decision to honour performance-related payments. Civil servants have continued to deliver key services right across government over the past year, and it is right that the successful contributions of individuals should be recognised."

Notes for editors

1. The FDA is the trade union and professional body representing 18,000 of the UK's senior civil and public servants. Our members include policy advisors, senior managers, tax inspectors, economists, statisticians, accountants, special advisers, government lawyers, diplomats, crown prosecutors and NHS managers.

2. Members in HMRC are represented by the Association of Revenue and Customs (ARC), a section of the FDA.

3. The FDA (formerly the First Division Association) should be referred to simply as "The FDA" and can be described as "the senior public servants' union".

4. For further information contact:

Jonathan Baume, FDA General Secretary, tel: 020 7401 5555 or 07976 951191.
Oliver Rowe, Communications Manager, tel: 020 7401 5588 or 07590 838696.