Armed Forces accommodation a national disgrace, poll shows
A poll commissioned by The Royal British Legion shows nearly two-thirds (60%) of people believe that the present state of Armed Forces accommodation is a national disgrace.
Ninety per cent think that Armed Forces personnel should not be put into a position where they are likely to worry about the quality of their family's accommodation while they are fighting on the frontline.
The poll, released today, demonstrates the strength of support among the public for a significant improvement in standards of accommodation for Britain’s Armed Forces and their families, the Legion says.
It comes at a time when the Prime Minister has called for the Military Covenant between the nation and the Armed Forces to be renewed and enshrined in law for the first time.
More than three quarters (78%) believe Armed Forces families deserve to live in high quality accommodation, with 80% believing the Government should make bringing Armed Forces accommodation up to the highest standard more of a priority.
The ComRes poll echoes the Legion’s call, in its manifesto for the 2010 general election, for the new Government “to bring all single and family accommodation up to the highest standard within the lifetime of the next parliament”.
Chris Simpkins, Director General of The Royal British Legion, said, “The Legion applauds this Government’s commitment to the Military Covenant, which we have long championed. We would now like to see that welcome commitment translate into better homes for our troops and their families. This is something the British public obviously feels very strongly about”.
Notes to Editors:
ComRes interviewed 1006 GB adults by telephone between 23 and 24 June 2010. Data were weighted to be representative demographically of all GB adults. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules (www.britishpollingcouncil.org).
When the House of Commons Defence Committee visited Cavalry Barracks, Hounslow and Elizabeth Barracks, Pirbright in 2007, members found that “poor accommodation was having a serious effect on morale and retention, especially amongst NCOs [Non-Commissioned Officers]”. (The Work of Defence Estates, House of Commons Defence Committee, 15th Report of Session 2006-2007, July 2007, HC 535.)
The Royal British Legion is the nation's leading Armed Forces charity providing care and support to all members of the British Armed Forces past and present and their families. It is also the national Custodian of Remembrance and safeguards the Military Covenant between the nation and its Armed Forces. It is best known for the annual Poppy Appeal and its emblem, the red poppy. www.britishlegion.org.uk