Latest on the Retirement Age

Published on Tuesday, 06 August 2015

In a landmark decision, the International Civil Service Commission agreed yesterday that UN and agency staff be able to choose to retire at 65, with implementation of this change by 1 January 2017.

The decision, which is expected to be validated by the General Assembly this fall, is in line with the position of Ban Ki-moon and many heads of agencies, and allows international organizations to harmonise their practices.

The decision recognises that many staff still have much to contribute at 60 or 62 and provides a more transparent alternative to the situation in many organizations where significant numbers of staff are already retained beyond 62 or rehired.

Certain organizations had queried whether retirement at 65 would prevent rejuvenation, good performance and gender balance.

However, staff unions showed that with the average UN entry age at 41, a new and improved performance management system and a lack of significant interest in ensuring gender balance at recruitment, changing the retirement age would have little impact.

Having spoken with certain organizations, we believe that the policy change, under consideration since 2009, will be relatively simple to implement, and look forward to working with organization management teams on taking this forward.

We will keep you updated on developments. The intervention of our staff federation, CCISUA, is here.


Published on Tuesday, 05 May 2015

As you know, the General Assembly has agreed in principle to allow staff who joined before 2014 to be able to choose to work until 65 if they wish or retire at 60 or 62. However, it asked the International Civil Service Commission, which sets our conditions of service, to revert as early as possible with an implementation date.

The ICSC had earlier recommended 1 January 2016 for implementation based on consultations with staff federations, such as CCISUA and FICSA (our Staff Union is a member of CCISUA) and management representatives of organizations. However, last year a number of organizations changed position and decided to lobby against the ICSC's recommendation.

CCISUA and FICSA were able to obtain that the ICSC would begin consultations with the organizations immediately for a final recommendation at its meeting this July to submit to the General Assembly this fall.

We believe that the implementation date should be as close as possible to 1 January 2016 as this issue has been under discussion since 2009 and has created great uncertainty among staff. We are also proposing options where those organizations that are ready to do so could go early, while those more reluctant would still have a final deadline for implementation - this ensures that a handful of organizations don't continually hold up the process for the others. Our Union, through CCISUA, shall be at the July meeting of ICSC and will be making our position clear there.

In view of the consultations undertaken by ICSC with organizations, we have sent this letter to the Secretary-General.

©2021 UNOV Staff Union