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3/19/15

Britain - Freedom of Speech: Civil servants to seek ministerial allowance to speak with media - by Stefano Pozzebon

Civil servants in the UK could be fired if they speak with journalists without first asking for permission from a government minister, the Telegraph reports.

The new measure is contained in the Civil Service Code, which regulates the jobs of about 400,000 public employees across the country. The Code was updated with the new language on March 16.
According to The Telegraph's Ben Riley-Smith, the measure "effectively bans any communication with journalists unless a senior member of the government has given explicit approval."

A source in the Cabinet Office said that the move was an attempt to increase ministerial accountability of civil servants in their department, the Telegraph reports.

The move raises some doubts about the government's commitment to transparency. The Civil Service is a public body created to support the government, but they are politically neutral employees.

Read more: Civil servants to seek ministerial allowance to speak with media - Business Insider

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