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Field Issues

Standing Committee on Conditions of Service in the Field advises the Executive Committee on issues affecting staff in field duty stations:

Safety and security: assured by the Inter-Agency Security Management Network (IASMN). Issues include: security training for staff; mobility; emergency telecommunications; residential security; and road safety, gender consideration in security management

Field allowances and benefits: these include hardship allowance, a non-pensionable allowance designed to compensate for the degree of hardship experienced by staff assigned to difficult duty stations, payable to internationally-recruited staff on assignment of one year or more; additional hardship allowance/non-family service allowance, introduced on 1 July 2011 for staff serving in non-family duty stations. An incentive for staff to undertake assignments at non-family locations; mobility incentive, should be to encourage mobility of staff in general to field duty stations; Rest and recuperation framework, viewed as a way to relieve accumulated stress under the difficult and dangerous conditions that characterized non-family duty stations

Non-HQ salary surveys for locally-recruited staff: ensures the objective application of the salary survey methodology for establishing salaries for locally-recruited staff including NPOs.

Review of hardship duty stations: participate in the review and classification of hardship duty stations according to conditions of life and work, security, health, isolation and environmental factors

Main issues raised at the 70th FICSA Council (13 to 17 February 2017)

Review of compensation package and its effect on staff deployed in the field: A non-family service allowance, a fixed amount irrespective of grade; addition of a new mobility incentive; changes in home leave cycle for all duty stations except those classified at D and E level.

Duty of care for UN personnel in the field: Reference was made to the report of the HLCM Working group: “Reconciling Duty of Care for UN personnel while operating in high risk environments” (CEB/2016/HLCM/11) with suggestions to make use of the recommendations in SRBs advocacy with senior management on issues related to health, well-being and security of their members, particularly those serving in high risk environments.


Briefing on 25th session of IASMN: A summary of the issues was presented: mobility and workforce development for UN security professionals, updates on security training for staff; emergency telecommunications. Note was made of the recent JIU report on Safety and Security in the UN System (JIU/REP/2016/9).


2016 Annual review of hardship duty stations for the Asia and Pacific region: Reference was made to the report of the annual meeting of the ICSC Working Group, tasked to review the hardship duty stations according to conditions of life and work, mainly in the Asian and Pacific region. Particular note was taken of the environmental situation in New Delhi and safety and security in Dhaka.


Review of the methodology for the classification of duty stations: Changes in the methodology needed to be introduced to better reflect the situation on the ground and ensure more accurate information before deploying UN staff to those duty stations.

Devaluation of local currency: Reference was made to the document “Ten major steps that staff representatives could take to protect salaries and purchasing power in the event of rapid currency devaluation” (see Report of the 70th FICSA Council). This issue will be further discussed during the review of the compensation package for the locally-recruited staff.