NICS sickness absence levels should be a wake up call, says FDA union

September 21, 2017

News from the FDA, the union of choice for senior managers and professionals in public service

Responding to a new report by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA), which shows that NICS staff took an average of 12.4 days off in 2016/2017 – an increase from 11.7 days the previous year – FDA Assistant General Secretary Rob O’Neill said: 

“This increase in sickness absence levels should worry ministers, senior managers and unions alike. It is clear that existing policies and initiatives to reduce sickness absence levels in the NICS are not working and these figures must be seen in the context of a 20% reduction in staff over recent years – without any commensurate reduction in workload.

“The FDA is calling for the replacement of the punitive NICS attendance management policy, which clearly is not working, with a more effective and balanced system that emphasises supporting and encouraging staff back to work."

Notes for editors
1. The FDA is the trade union for the UK's senior public servants and professionals at grade HEO and above. FDA membership includes more than 18,000 senior civil servants, diplomats, Government policy advisors, prosecutors, tax professionals, economists, solicitors and other professionals working across Government and the NHS.

2. 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".

3. The FDA can be found on Twitter @FDA_union and at www.fda.org.uk. General Secretary Dave Penman tweets as @FDAGenSec.

4. For further information contact:

Matt Foster, Communications Officer, tel: 07982 514 524.
Tommy Newell, Communications Officer, tel: 020 7401 5555 or 07738 729 145.