Wednesday 26 June 2019 / 10:30 PM Armed Forces / Defence / Jeremy Corbyn

Labour’s five pledges to support the armed forces

Labour launches Five Pledges to support the Armed Forces as new research shows that an Army Private’s starting salary is nearly £1200 lower than in 2010

On Thursday (tomorrow), ahead of Armed Forces Day, Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn and Shadow Defence Secretary Nia Griffith will announce Labour’s five pledges to support armed forces and their families.

The announcement comes as new House of Commons Library research shows that after almost a decade of real terms pay cuts forced on our military personnel by the government, a private’s starting salary is £1159 lower in real terms today than in 2010.

Jeremy Corbyn and Nia Griffith will launch the pledges on a visit in the north east of England to meet military personnel.

Labour’s Five Pledges to support the forces and their families are:

  1. Fair Pay – scrap the public sector pay cap, which has seen a 5.8% real terms pay cut for the starting salary of an Army Private
  2. Decent housing for forces and their families – end the growing reliance on the private rented sector
  3. A voice for service men and women – consult on creating a representative body, similar to the Police Federation
  4. End privatisation – root and branch review of outsourcing and a clear presumption in favour of public delivery of public contracts
  5. Support for forces children – better access to schools with dedicated local authorities admissions strategy for the particular challenge of frequent school moves


Jeremy Corbyn MP, Leader of the Labour Party, said:

“We have an important duty to ensure that our armed forces, our veterans, and their families, have the very best support. But after nearly a decade of cuts and privatisation our Forces and their families are paying the price.

“The Conservative government has cut the pay of our servicemen and women, outsourced services to private companies, and left many living in service accommodation with leaking roofs, broken boilers and appliances that don’t work.

“Today we make our pledges to our service personnel to give them the pay, conditions of service and respect they deserve. Labour will guarantee a better deal for all those who serve in our Armed Forces.”

Nia Griffith MP, Labour’s Shadow Defence Secretary, said:

“As a country, we are rightly proud of our highly-skilled servicemen and women, ready at a moment’s notice to do whatever is necessary to defend our country.

“But under the Conservatives, our Armed Forces have had a raw deal. The government has delivered short-sighted defence cuts and failed privatisations that have let down personnel and taxpayers alike.

“The next Labour government will guarantee a better deal for servicemen and women.

“We will lift the public sector pay cap and give personnel a fair pay rise. We will ensure that all service members have access to decent accommodation, without the threat of being forced into the private rented sector. We will give personnel a voice and consult on introducing an Armed Forces’ representative body. We will scrap the dodgy outsourcing deals that do not deliver. And we will ensure that all service children can get a good school place.

“Those who serve our country deserve our full and unwavering support. The next Labour government will put the needs of the Armed Forces community at the very heart of what we do.”