Levelling Up Civil Servants Take the Biscuit

A Whitehall co-conspirator sent Guido these images from inside the Department for Levelling Up this morning. So far, the Public and Commercial Services union have leafletted three floors of the department, though it’s not clear whether they’ve also struck the Home Office yet. This isn’t the first time PCS have done this in recent months. Must be struggling to bring in the dough. That’s the way the cookie crumbles…

Of course there’s nothing stopping union members campaigning in their place of work. Good to know at least someone is in the office today, though…

mdi-timer 25 January 2023 @ 10:50 25 Jan 2023 @ 10:50 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Civil Servant Brazenly Endorses Lisa Nandy’s Policies at IfG Conference

Lisa Nandy graced the Institute for Government conference this afternoon, only to be welcomed and endorsed by an audience member who openly admitted to being a serving senior civil servant. The audience member introduced herself as Grace Duffy, and told the Labour frontbencher “it’s so great to have you.” 

“Hi, I’m Grace Duffy from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities! No it’s so great to have you. I was wondering if you could tell us a little bit more about your views on how we address the problems in the housing market, particularly the role of the private renting sector. I was particularly struck by the comment you made about housing being a human right and how that relates to the view of not just the private renting sector but housing as either a financial product or as an investment; and how that relates to the human rights thing. 

Also as someone who just moved out of London, just strong agree on the buses, it is such an enourmous source of frustration.”

Using her question to twice agree with her boss’s opponent seems like a pretty cut-and-dry incident of breaching the Civil Service Code, which requires the blob to “maintain political impartiality… no matter what your own political beliefs are.” It adds, “You must not: act in a way that is determined by party political considerations”. Grace Duffy is the Head of Private Rented Sector Dispute Resolution & Non-Traditional Tenures. She’s been a civil servant since 2014 – surely she should know better…

mdi-timer 17 January 2023 @ 16:58 17 Jan 2023 @ 16:58 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Data Shows Most Civil Servants Will Be ‘Striking from Home’

As we learn that 100,000 civil servants are going to go on strike, Guido wonders how we will be able to tell? Most of them are staying home on days when they are “working”.

It’s worth taking a look at how difficult it will be to tell they are striking. The Government’s most recent published figures for office occupancy shows that even the best attended office (Health) has less than half the staff coming in to the office:

It hardly looks like the strikes will bring the country to a halt or even be noticeable. If some of the more bolshy civil servants form a picket line outside it will be the first time this year that many of them will have made an effort to come to the office…

mdi-timer 12 January 2023 @ 10:25 12 Jan 2023 @ 10:25 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
100,000 Civil Servants to Strike

100,000 civil servants are to strike on February 1 after union bosses decided the well-remunerated, work-from-home, generous overtime, luxury pensions and highly regarded conditions of their members were simply unacceptable. The action will involve members from 124 government departments, who will join their comrades from the border force staff on the picket lines.

Provided the government can encourage the civil servants to stay on the picket lines, unpaid, forever, this latest action by the cash-grabbing union barons could prove a great victory for Jacob Rees-Mogg, whose crusade to cut mandarin numbers was scuppered by Rishi’s government. Given civil servants’ love of refusing to go into the office these days, it will admittedly be very difficult to break the picket…

mdi-timer 11 January 2023 @ 17:33 11 Jan 2023 @ 17:33 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Blob’s Spoilt Graduates Latest to Join Strike Action

As the temperatures drop in this bleak midwinter, spare a thought for our civil servant fast-streamers. The cohort of young Tiny Tims has gone through the consultative stage for strikes – and 81% voted for action. Unsurprisingly, The Guardian has taken to championing their cause, quoting their union who say they are “so poorly paid they are skipping meals and relying on family to get by”. 

Guido wouldn’t want to throw shade at a vulnerable, marginalised, stigmatised group like Russell Group alumni in taxpayer-funded jobs, but it must be remembered that the starting salary for most programmes is £28,000, and can go up to £55,000. So, maybe we can pocket our handkerchiefs. These young people are fresh out of university… and the median national salary is £33,000…

mdi-timer 12 December 2022 @ 16:30 12 Dec 2022 @ 16:30 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Serving Civil Servant Standing as Boris’s Lib Dem Opponent

As civil servants make plans to join the picket lines, one Whitehall wonk, Blaise Baquiche of DEFRA is taking his anti-government activity to another level. The environmental wonk is standing as a Liberal Democrat against the party he’s meant to be serving impartially. And the seat he’s been selected for… Uxbridge and South Ruislip.

Blaise has been working in DEFRA for almost two years, so the Brexit-hating blobster was supposed to be implementing Boris’s agenda – and now he’s seeking election to fight it. The Remainer activist has been specifically tasked with leading comms on the Government’s post-Brexit agricultural policy. It’s no surprise that Blaise counts himself as a member of the tofu-eating wokerati…

Section 4.4.19 of the Civil Service management code states:

“Civil servants are disqualified from election to Parliament… and from election to the European Parliament (European Parliamentary Elections Act 1978). They must therefore resign from the Civil Service before standing for election in accordance with paragraphs 4.4.20 and 4.4.21.”

Whilst some civil servants are granted permission to campaign politically, all have to stand down before nomination papers go in. Guido trusts the resignation letter won’t get caught up in the mail strikes.

UPDATE: DEFRA has been in touch to say Blaise has resigned, though they’re not saying when. This doesn’t come as a surprise, Guido understands he’s still serving out his notice…

mdi-timer 12 December 2022 @ 13:30 12 Dec 2022 @ 13:30 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
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