Since becoming Minister for Defence, I have made no non-civil service appointments to my Department.
Two Special Advisers were recruited directly and are classed as unestablished Civil Servants. The provisions of Paragraphs 5.1 and 5.2 of the code of Conduct for Civil Servants concerning restrictions on political activity, do not apply to holders of such roles.
Civilian employees are also recruited by my Department on an ongoing basis and are employed at various military installations throughout the country to support the Defence Forces in tasks such as the upkeep and maintenance of military infrastructure and equipment. The grades are spread across a wide spectrum and also include specialists such as healthcare professionals and technicians. Appointments are made following open competition and with the approval of the Minister.