§ Mr. Janner
asked the Prime Minister if she will require all Government Departments to keep such formal analysis of their staff, by sex and grade, as will enable them to ensure that there is fair and open competition without discrimination on grounds of sex in each section and unit of each Department.
§ The Prime Minister
[pursuant to her reply, 8 February 1984, c. 599.]: I am pleased to tell the hon. Member that a programme of action, in response to the recommendations of the report by the joint review group on employment opportunities for women in the Civil Service, has been agreed with the Council of Civil Service Unions. Copies of the document have been placed in the Library. Some of the main items of the programme are:
- (i) the adoption of the policy statement;
- (ii) an encouragement to Departments to expand part-time working opportunities where that is feasible;
- (iii) encouragement to Departments to ensure that the provisions for maternity leave, part-time work and special leave are brought to the attention of staff as necessary;
- (iv) review of existing guidance on child care;
- (v) selective research on the relative progress of women;
- (vi) consultation between management and unions to review and stimulate progress, taking account of resource limitations.
Under the programme of action, data provided annually in such areas as promotion by sex and grade, attendance on training courses (where available), posts restricted to one sex and equal opportunity complaints will be examined jointly by management and trade unions at national level, to ensure that there is fair and open competition without discrimination on grounds of sex. Similarly joint management and trade union Whitley machinery will be used at departmental and, if appropriate, local levels.