Future viability of Defence Forces is put in jeopardy under FG – Chambers

A report published today which was commissioned by the Representation Association of Commissioned Officers (RACO) reveals that almost 80% of recently inducted Defence Forces Officers are planning to leave early due to the lack of viable career path as a consequence of Government policy.

Commenting on the report’s findings, Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Defence, Jack Chambers TD said, „The instability posed by the ongoing retention crisis within Ireland’s Defence Forces has been raised with both the Government and the Minister for Defence, Paul Kehoe time and time again.

„There is a long record of inaction on Fine Gael’s part when it comes to the appalling treatment of Defence Forces personnel. The impact of that is reflected in today’s findings and the fact that the majority of officers do not see themselves serving beyond their 30’s and what should be the prime of their careers.

„This Government’s disrespectful attitude towards the loyal men and women that have devoted themselves to serving in our countries military is having a detrimental impact on the sector as a whole. Those in military service deserve to be held in high esteem not left to endure such poor morale that they couldn’t bear to face any prolonged period of duty. 

„It is an eye-opener when you consider that Officers who have pursued a vocation, spent years in training and education, made substantial personal and professional sacrifices to honourably serve our State, are desperate to get out. The Minister should pause to consider how difficult it must be internally that 80% of new officers can no longer face the prospect of fulfilling their position.

„A comprehensive root and branch review is one of the last remaining measures that could possibly protect the future viability of our Defence Forces. When is the Minister prepared to finally stand up for and show some degree of appreciation for these personnel?” he concluded.

Fianna Fáil
Jack Chambers TD
Spokesperson on Defence

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