Cost Sharing for FICSA Elected Officials

Cost-sharing arrangements for FICSA elected officials – final outcome and endorsement by HLCM Members with staff associations/unions that are members of the Federation of International Civil Servants’ Associations (FICSA) 

We are pleased to inform you that all 29 CEB FICSA Organizations/Entities and OSCE have considered, endorsed and committed to the proposed cost-sharing arrangement for the Federation’s President and General-Secretary, to be implemented effective 1 May 2022, for the initial period of 1 May to 31 December 2022, and to be reviewed in three years i.e., 2025.


How will this impact you as a Staff Association / Union member of FICSA? 

The President and General Secretary of FICSA are nominated from its full members and elected for a two-year term. The position requires a fully-funded full time release, which means the releasing organization will continue to fund the staff costs of the elected officers while they are released to FICSA. 

With the cost-sharing or funding model in place, the staff cost of the two FICSA officers will be shared amongst organizations having staff associations/unions which are members of FICSA instead.

This means that all full members of FICSA that are a part of the cost-sharing, would be able to field candidates for these two positions for elections, without having to worry about the organization having to fully fund the release as it is covered by the cost sharing.

FICSA members would be able to elect and vote for the best candidate to represent them at the UN Common System.


How will this benefit the releasing organization?

Through the cost-sharing, organizations would benefit through: 

a) limiting each organization’s estimated annual liability to a specific amount based on the arrangement agreed upon and to be adjusted to the actual grade of the elected FICSA President and Secretary General;
b) allowing a predictable budget to be set aside which is dedicated to the important principle of staff representation and meaningful consultation, and staff-management relations; and
c) contributing towards a positive environment in the staff-management relations of the international civil service, as well as demonstrate that UN Common System organizations are walking the talk when it comes to SDG 8 and decent work for all.


Staff Representation at the UN Common System

FICSA was created in 1952, with the mission to coordinate the work of staff representative bodies in its membership, pool resources and have a common position when representing staff at interagency bodies.

The former Consultative Committee on Administrative questions (CCAQ), now the High-Level Committee on Management (HLCM) recognized the importance of staff representation through the staff federations, when it decided, in 1973, that local associations/unions should raise matters of general importance through FICSA, as it was deemed impossible to expect the individual staff associations/unions to represent staff at the common system level.

FICSA represents its members to the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC) as stated in Article 4, 12, 17, 24, 25, 28 of its Statutes adopted by the UN General Assembly through resolution 3357(XXIX) in Dec 1974.

The United Nations General Assembly resolution 34/220 (Dec 1979) and 35/213 (Dec 1980) reiterates its readiness to receive and consider fully the views of staff as set out by FICSA. FICSA attends the agenda item "UN Common System" at the 5th Committee of the UN General Assembly to present its statement and views to the Member States. 


Brief history of the Cost-sharing

The cost-sharing proposal was discussed by the CCAQ (now known as the CEB) at its 56th session in March 1982, and had agreed to the idea of distributing among the organizations the replacement cost of the General Secretary of FICSA; it had also been considered that this arrangement might be extended to cover the replacement cost of the President. CCAQ(FB) had been requested to develop an appropriate cost-sharing formula and examine practical arrangements. This was raised again in 1985, 86, 87, 88, and in 1991 the CCAQ had no consensus on such arrangements. At its July 2004 meeting (CEB/2004/HLCM/25, para. 31) the HR Network considered a proposal for financial support to FICSA.

At the HLCM’s 29th session in March 2015, FICSA submitted a document with a proposed cost sharing formula to distribute the annual cost of the two FICSA officers (the President and General Secretary) across all organizations having staff associations/unions which are members of FICSA. A working group was then established, and is chaired by WHO from November 2017, and worked on the mechanism and proposal throughout 2018-19. 

After comprehensive consultation and discussion with all HLCM Member organizations with staff associations/unions that are members of the Federation of International Civil Servants’ Associations (FICSA) throughout 2019-2021 (impacted by the global pandemic), the cost sharing was endorsed to be implemented from 1 May 2022

History of Staff-Management Relations in the UN Common System

History of the cost-sharing

Read the FICSA proposal paper to the HLCM and the subsequent initial discussion here.


See a brief infographic on timeline leading to this achievement here: 




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