A new film about recent militarism and the battle for the hearts and minds of young people in the UK. The film follows the stories of Ben Griffin, former SAS soldier and founder of Veterans for Peace UK, and Quaker activist Sam Walton, and features the work of ForcesWatch and partner organisations. See here for screenings and how to organise one.
We look at the Lost Heroines campaign by specialist lawyers Bolt Burdon Kemp which highlights some of the issues facing women in the military, with a particular focus on sexual harassment.
We welcome Liberty's Second Rate Justice report and the launch of their new Human Rights Helpline for the UK Armed Forces.
Last week the Coroner at Working Coroner’s Court delivered the findings into the circumstances of Sean Benton’s death at Deepcut Barracks in June 1995. Sean was the first of four soldiers to die there between 1995 and 2002. ForcesWatch have been monitoring the inquest; this article shares our records from the inquest and notes on the final findings. Download the full notes
Parliamentary mental health inquiry shows youngest military recruits and those from disadvantaged backgrounds face greater mental health risks than others in the forces
ForcesWatch press release
ForcesWatch press release
The Defence Select Committee recommended that the Ministry of Defence ‘conducts or commissions further research into female personnel, early Service leavers and recruits under 18 to determine the extent to which they are at higher risk of developing mental health conditions.’
Today is a significant day in the Deepcut tragedy. We explore some of the problems that allowed the toxic environment of Deepcut to develop and continue to persist today and why raising the age of recruitment would provide a significant part of the solution.
Concerns we have raised with the Scottish Parliament about armed forces activities in special schools have been picked up by The Daily Record newspaper.
Drive to fast-track late joiners at AFC Harrogate led to issues including skewing staff/student ratios in dangerous activities.
On the day that the Harrogate abuse court martials were dropped and the press was allowed to comment after reporting restrictions were lifted, there was coverage in almost all the major news outlets. Our comments, and those of partner organisations, were also reported.
Three cases involving over 40 claimants and 16 Army instructors have collapsed, raising a number of serious concerns about failings within the military justice system. As a result, serious allegations of abuse against very young recruits have not been tested. We call for changes to the system and question whether a military environment where aggression is fostered will ever be condusive to the wellbeing of young recruits.