Page 26 - Foreign Service Journal - April 2013

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April 2013
the foreign Service journal
Te drive to overhaul the
government’s entire foreign-
policy machinery, which
had given impetus to the
reform movement, ener-
gized scores of ofcers—
58 individuals, all volun-
teers, are listed as contributors to
Toward a Modern Diplomacy
which incorporated the work of the Committee on Career Prin-
ciples. But it ultimately proved unproductive. Te association
had far greater success with professional and workplace issues,
especially after the change of administration in 1969 brought
new people and fresh thinking to the department’s manage-
ment (see box, p. 24).
By the end of 1969, the Nixon administration had issued a
new executive order on labor-management relations, and the
AFSA board had declared that bread-and-butter issues are
the “bedrock of AFSA’s concerns.” Soon thereafter, the board
resolved to seek recognition as the labor organization for
the Foreign Service in all
foreign afairs agencies.
AFSA by then had a record
to run on: the association
had already successfully
consulted with manage-
ment on transfer allow-
ances, kindergarten allowances, temporary housing, travel for
dependent college students, and other issues.
These bread-and-butter issues seem a long way from the
fundamental changes in the government’s foreign affairs
structure that were the reformers’ original goal. But it was the
accumulation of successful interventions with management,
not the construction of a grand design for policymaking, that
brought AFSA credibility with Foreign Service employees
and victories in representation elections in State, USIA and
USAID. These victories allowed the association to become
what the reformers wanted it to be: the voice of the career
Foreign Service.
As the Sixties grew
more turbulent, AFSA
became more active.