Connect helps FDA back public servants against 'scapegoating'

A union representing the top brass of Whitehall mandarins has brought in agency help to fight back against mounting political 'scapegoating'.

Whitehall: mandarins have faced criticism
Whitehall: mandarins have faced criticism

The FDA, a professional association and union for senior public servants and professionals, has called in Connect Communications to defend members against media and political criticism.

The news comes as part of a shift in the focus of the union to take on a more strident role following negative coverage of the civil service. Earlier this month, three civil servants were suspended over the West Coast Mainline bid debacle.

Labour MP Margaret Hodge, who chairs Westminster's Public Accounts Committee, subsequently called for 'proper accountability' to 'raise civil servants' game'.

Connect director Emily Wallace said: 'For the first time, the FDA feels so annoyed that it wants to ramp up comms and lobbying activity. It wants to hold a positive campaign about valuing the civil service to ensure they're not tied up in politics, not scapegoated. It should be politicians who are taking responsibility.'

The campaign will also face up to criticisms over the 'revolving door' between the civil service and the private sector, and focus on issues of pay.

FDA general secretary Dave Penman said: 'We have a huge challenge in convincing the Government that it needs to address urgently the deteriorating pay and reward package for our members or face an exodus of talent.'

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