PRN: Lord Ashcroft Releases Survey of Armed Forces Personnel

14/mag/2012 13:27:23 PR Newswire Turismo Contatta l'autore

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Lord Ashcroft Releases Survey of Armed Forces Personnel


LONDON, May 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

Lord Ashcroft has today published the biggest ever independent survey of the British Armed Forces. The research, which includes a poll of over 9,000 serving personnel and focus groups with members of the Army, RAF, Royal Navy and Royal Marines, explores how those in the Forces think they are seen by people in Britain, their experiences of wearing uniform in public, and what problems they experience as a result of their service.

At a time when thousands of Service personnel face redundancy, the study also reveals how they see their career prospects once they leave the Forces.

Though Lord Ashcroft's report is independent, the research was conducted with the permission of General Sir David Richards, Chief of the Defence Staff, and with organisational help from the Ministry of Defence.

The General has welcomed the report, as has Defence Secretary Philip Hammond.

The Armed Forces & Society: The military in Britain through the eyes of Service personnel, employers and the public, explores the relationship between the Forces and wider society, and asks what more could be done to ensure that those who serve in the military are properly recognised. The study also includes research among former Service personnel, the general public, and employers in small and medium-sized businesses. For comparison, research was also conducted among members of the US Armed Services and the American public.

Key findings from the research include:

  • The public rated the Forces very highly, and personnel felt public support has increased in recent years. However, some officers feared that the relationship with the public could deteriorate as current high-profile missions come to an end.
  • More than half of Service personnel had experienced strangers offering thanks and support in the last five years - but more than one in five said they had had strangers shouting abuse. Nearly one in twenty had experienced violence or attempted violence in the UK. A quarter of personnel said they had spontaneously been offered discounts.
  • Two thirds of the American public said they had personally thanked a member of the Forces or could see themselves doing so. This compared to just over a quarter in Britain.
  • Nearly two thirds of the public said there was too little recognition for the Armed Forces in British society.
  • Nearly three quarters of UK personnel serving oversees said they had experienced companies refusing to send goods to BFPO addresses.
  • More than a quarter of personnel said they had been refused a mortgage, loan or credit card in the last five years, and one in five had had trouble getting a mobile phone contract. Personnel often said that their unavoidable frequent changes of address counted against them in credit checks.
  • Finding a good job was the biggest concern among Service personnel about leaving the Forces. More than half feared that employers would not understand what they had done in the military and so would not give them a chance. Despite their experience, more junior personnel often feared they would be starting their careers from scratch.
  • Despite a generally positive view of Forces personnel and their attributes, a quarter of employers thought non-officers were unlikely to have people management skills.

Notes to Editors

To read the full report and for further details of the research, please go to

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