Photo of Tim Loughton

Tim Loughton (East Worthing and Shoreham, Conservative)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education

(1) how many formal complaints his Department has received about the conduct of special advisers in his Department since May 2010 from (a) other members of staff, (b) officials from other departments and (c) members of the public;

(2) how many formal grievance procedures by staff have taken place in his Department in each of the last five years;

(3) how many grievance procedures by staff in his Department have resulted in payments to those staff in each of the last five years; and what the size of each such payment was.

Photo of Elizabeth Truss

Elizabeth Truss (The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education; South West Norfolk, Conservative)

holding answer 14 February 2013

The Department has received one formal complaint about a special adviser that was not upheld. The Department has not received any other formal complaints from officials from other Departments, or members of the public about special advisers.

The Department has a clear policy and expects grievances to be resolved by managers without HR involvement where possible. The number of grievances that have been escalated to HR from employees over the last five years is set out in the following table:

  Number of grievances
2008 8
2009 18
2010 (1)
2011 5
2012 16
(1) Less than five.

There have been no payoffs as an outcome of an internal grievance being upheld.

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