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Armed Forces: Young People

Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 5th March 2019.

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Photo of Jim Cunningham Jim Cunningham Labour, Coventry South

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what estimate his Department has made of the proportion of recruits that joined the armed forces before the age of 18 and subsequently left the armed forces before their 18th birthday in each year since 2010.

Photo of Tobias Ellwood Tobias Ellwood The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence

The requested information is provided in the table below:

Proportions of under-18s who joined the UK Regular Armed Forces and left their Service before their 18th birthday, by Financial Year (FY) and Service

FY

2009-10

2010-11

2011-12

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

2015-16

2016-17

Naval Service

28.4%

29.9%

15.9%

27.3%

22.3%

22.7%

23.5%

21.4%

Army

30.9%

25.8%

25.2%

18.9%

20.8%

20.3%

19.9%

20.0%

Royal Air Force

17.1%

9.1%

18.5%

~

~

8.3%

4.2%

7.9%

Tri Service

29.2%

25.7%

24.7%

18.9%

20.1%

20.0%

19.2%

19.1%

Notes:

1. FYs relate to the year in which personnel joined the UK Regular Armed Forces.

2. Outflow relates to those who have subsequently left the UK Regular Armed Forces having joined in each FY and includes those who left in the same FY or a later FY.

3. Outflow has been measured to 30 September 2018. There may still be some outflow of personnel who joined before 31 March 2017 and have not yet reached age 18.

4. The proportion of under-18s who joined in FY 2017-18 and subsequently left before the age of 18 is not yet known.

5. Tildes ‘~’ refer to percentages which are suppressed on the basis that the underpinning numbers are below five.

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