Armed Forces: Ethnic Groups and Females:Written question - 67068

Q
(Coventry South)
[N]
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Asked on: 08 March 2017
Ministry of Defence
Armed Forces: Ethnic Groups and Females
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of trends in the representation of (a) women and (b) people from BAME backgrounds in the armed forces in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Mark Lancaster
Answered on: 13 March 2017

There has been some excellent work across Defence in the area of diversity and inclusion. However, progress in terms of the representative rates of our people - both military and civilian - has been too slow. Although it is improving, it is clear that there is still much more that we need to do if we are to successfully attract and retain diverse talent both now and in the future.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is working towards a target of 15% female recruitment to the Armed Forces by 2020. The Department is also working towards a target of 10% of recruits to come from Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds by 2020.

These are challenging targets, however they will help make the Armed Forces more diverse and reflect the society they serve. Work to meet these targets includes better understanding and greater engagement with the communities we want to recruit from; reviewing recruitment processes and better targeting our marketing and communications.

As at 1 October 2016 recruitment of female military personnel was 11.5% of total intake and recruitment of BAME military personnel was 5.8% of total intake. Full details of the MOD's performance against the 2020 diversity intake targets, including historic trends from September 2013, can be found in our publication 'UK Armed Forces Biannual Diversity Statistics' the latest edition of which (October 2016) is available at the following address:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-armed-forces-biannual-diversity-statistics-2016

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