Ads help us keep this site online

Support for Armed Forces in decline

25th June 2019
Posted by Johnny Jenkins

‘Lest we forget’ is an evocative phrase however current support and interest for serving and ex-serving personnel is waning and the British public may be losing its respect for the military – according to new figures. 

The latest research from the Armed Forces Charity SSAFA highlights the outdated misconceptions of the modern-day military and the impact it is having on public support for the Forces. 

The research – commissioned to celebrate Armed Forces Day – suggests that over a third of the Britons (36%) do not actively support the Armed Forces. This figure rises drastically to nearly half (48%) among those aged 16-34. 

The lack of support seems to be linked to a widespread lack of awareness of who the Forces are and what they do. Despite the UK’s military not being in active conflict for almost five years, over half (52%) are more familiar with the roles of the Armed Forces while engaged in active conflict, then they are now. 

Our perception of what a serving military personnel looks like is also skewed with two thirds (64%) admitting that when thinking of the Armed Forces, they stereotypically picture a frontline, camouflage-clad soldier on a fighter pilot. However, this is far from reality, with the modern military having a vast infrastructure.

Johnny spoke to Gary Williams, who is the Head of Specialist Services at SSAFA and Surgeon Lieutenant Commander Liz James, who has served as a naval doctor in the Navy since August 2008.