FDA welcomes ICO guidance calling for senior salary scales to be published

23 February 2009

(For immediate release)

FDA welcomes ICO guidance calling for senior salary scales to be published

Commenting on the publication of guidance from the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) on when public servants' salaries should be disclosed, FDA Head of Operations Dave Penman said:

"We welcome the publication of this guidance today, which clearly sets out that information about individual public servants' salaries should be disclosed if there is a legitimate public interest and it will not result in unfair intrusion on individuals. The civil service already publishes information on the salary levels of the most senior civil servants in £5,000 bands, as suggested by the guidance. Senior civil servants' pay is determined by the Senior Salaries Review Body and the pay ranges for these roles is publicly available.

"There will always be a balance to be struck between the legitimate expectation of privacy from public servants and justified public interest. The guidance issued today helps organisations balance these interests, taking account of reasonable expectations given the seniority of individuals and the nature of their role."

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:

Dave Penman, Head of Operations, tel: 020 7401 5555 or 07967 503827.

Kay Hender, Communications Assistant, tel: 020 7401 5589.