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Union condemns suspension of Civil Service Muslim Network

PUBLIC service union PCS has condemned Deputy Prime Minister Oliver Dowden for suspending the Civil Service Muslim Network, saying it was concerning he would suspend a group whose purpose is to represent and support Muslim civil servants.

“That this has taken place during Ramadan is entirely insensitive,” it said in a statement.

“Added to government departments such as HMRC claiming that donating to a legitimate humanitarian charity, Medical Aid for Palestinians, is contrary to Civil Service values, it raises deep concerns of Islamophobia at the heart of government.

“As a union, we condemn both anti-semitism and Islamophobia, and we do not believe suspending support groups for staff and closing down discussion addresses these issues.”

PCS general secretary Fran Heathcote is seeking a meeting with the Cabinet Office on the Civil Service code and the rights of workers to support humanitarian causes and attend protests and vigils calling for peace and a ceasefire in Gaza.

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