Armed Forces: Deployment

Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 9th February 2016.

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Photo of Gregory Campbell Gregory Campbell Shadow DUP Spokesperson (International Development), Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Cabinet Office)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether he plans to review the harmony guidelines on periods of time away for service personnel.

Photo of Mark Lancaster Mark Lancaster The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence

The Ministry of Defence has no plans to review the harmony guidelines, which are set to ensure that there is an acceptable balance between the competing aspects of the lives of Service personnel.

We recognise that when harmony guidelines are breached, this can have an impact on operational effectiveness. That is why we are committed to minimising the number of unnecessary breaches whilst at the same time maintaining operational capability.

The Ministry of Defence publishes Monthly Service Personnel Statistics which include (at Table 10) the numbers of trained UK Regular Personnel breaching Individual Harmony Guidelines. The latest report, published on 14 January 2016, shows that as at 1 October 2015 the breach rate equated to 0.4% for the Naval Service, 2.6% for the Army and 1.3% for the Royal Air Force.

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