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Civil Servants: Political Impartiality

Volume 491: debated on Thursday 30 April 2009

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) whether the National Whitley Council Agreement on Facilities for Industrial Relations Duties and Trade Union Activities in the Non-Industrial Civil Service (a) permits or (b) prohibits the use of office facilities, including telephones and computers, by trades union representatives for activity of a political nature; (270158)

(2) whether the National Whitley Council Agreement on Facilities for Industrial Relations Duties and Trade Union Activities in the Non-Industrial Civil Service (a) permits or (b) prohibits paid leave in respect of attendance at conferences or union meetings of a political nature by trades union representatives.

The National Whitley Council Agreement on Facilities for Industrial Relations Duties and Trade Union Activities in the Non-Industrial Civil Service is no longer an extant document and the authority to grant facilities/time off to trade unions representatives is delegated to departments. The rules relating to civil servants’ involvement in political activities, including elected trade union representatives are set out in the civil service management code.