Thèmes - Contractual arrangements

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A/59/466 26. In response to General Assembly resolutions 55/258 and 57/305, the Secretary-General has submitted his definitive proposal on new contractual arrangements, spelling out the differences between existing and proposed types of appointments (A/59/263/Add.1). The proposal involves simplifying contractual arrangements at the United Nations so that they would consist of only three types of appointments, namely: short-term (up to a maximum of six months) to meet peak workload and specific short-term requirements; fixed-term (renewable up to a maximum of five years); and continuing, to be granted to staff members who had served on fixed-term contracts for five years and met the highest standards of efficiency, competency and integrity. Continuing appointments could be terminated on the same grounds as permanent contracts, but could also be terminated “in the interest of the Organization”(A/59/263/Add.1, para. 4 (c)).

27. Probationary and permanent appointments would no longer be used; however, there would be no change in the contractual status of staff who currently had permanent appointments; staff already serving on a probationary appointment would retain the right to be considered for a permanent appointment; and a one-time review would be conducted of all fixed-term staff appointed under the 100 series of the Staff Rules who would have been eligible to be considered for conversion to permanent appointment if not for the freeze imposed on such conversions. The Advisory Committee was informed that approximately 500 staff would be eligible for consideration for conversion to permanent appointment. Should the General Assembly approve the proposed changes to contractual arrangements, care should be taken to handle the interim arrangements in an equitable manner that is sensitive to the need to maintain staff morale; that is to say, measures should be in place to ensure the application of objective criteria in considering conversions of probationary and fixed-term contracts into permanent appointments for eligible staff. The Committee welcomes the intention of the Secretariat to ensure that all options for placing staff will be considered carefully before termination is decided upon.