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MI5 staff to be supported by public service union

The Security Service (MI5) and the Security Service staff association have this week reached an agreement with the FDA - the union for senior managers in the civil service - for the union to provide professional industrial relations support to staff. Staff will not become full members of the FDA, but the FDA will work closely with the Service staff association on issues that affect the interests of staff.

This agreement builds on the successful arrangements that the FDA has in other sensitive areas of government and is designed to improve the access of the staff association to support and advice, whilst protecting personal anonymity and national security.

Announcing the agreement today at the TUC in Brighton, FDA General Secretary Jonathan Baume said:

"This arrangement is really good news for the Service and its staff. This vital public service needs to recruit and retain the very best people and will only do so by offering competitive remuneration packages as well as providing staff with the confidence that the organisation values and respects their contribution. Creating a stronger staff voice in this way will go a long way to achieving that objective.

"This agreement is a vote of confidence in the FDA and recognises the valuable and constructive role modern trade unions play in workplaces across the UK."

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, General Secretary, tel: 020 7401 5555 or 07976 951191
• Oliver Rowe, Communications Officer, tel: 020 7401 5588 or 07751 366680.

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