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Wednesday 25 May 2022

Annual Conference 2022: Penman calls on Prime Minister to stop the culture war

You can now catch up on speeches from FDA General Secretary Dave Penman, First Civil Service Commissioner Gisela Stuart, and ITV Deputy Political Editor Anushka Asthana at the FDA's recent Annual Delegate Conference.

Dave Penman, FDA General Secretary

In his speech to conference, Penman denounced “the self-inflicted wounds of a government that continues to go to war with the very public servants who support and deliver its agenda”, taking aim at the Minister for Government Efficiency Jacob Rees-Mogg for his “crass, condescending, passive-aggressive little notes for people who were actually delivering vital public services”.

In a message for the Prime Minister, Penman argued: will say: “You say you want a brilliant civil service and you want to attract the brightest and best to join it. Well, this is not the way to go about it.



Baroness Gisela Stuart, First Civil Service Commissioner

In her first public speech since taking up her role as First Civil Service Commissioner, Baroness Gisela Stuart described anonymous briefings against civil servants as "counterproductive", arguing that we need to "respect and celebrate" the professionalism of the civil service. She also addressed the issues around public perception: "The range of difficult things you do that goes beyond Jim Hacker and The Thick Of It. I do wonder whether we shouldn’t do more to show the wide range of things civil servants do.”

You can read a copy of her speech here.

Anushka Asthana, Deputy Political Editor of ITV News

In a wide-ranging discussion with FDA members, ITV News Deputy Political Editor Anushka Asthana reflected on her career to date and the state of play in UK politics ahead of the next general election.

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