Finding the facts
You would not believe, well, actually you may, that some of those with power to make change aren't even aware of how many UK SPOs are out there. They've not bothered to enquire or investigate.
I did. I estimate that there are 116,070 UK SPOs based on the following calculations:
Taken from House of Commons Library:
"The total size of the full-time UK Armed Forces (trained and untrained) on 1 July 2021 was just under 159,000."
Consulting the UK Regular Armed Forces Continuous Attitude Survey Results 2021:
49% of respondents (selected to represent a fair cross section of the UK Armed Forces) were married and 24% were in long-term relationships.
Thus 73% of 159,000
= 116,070 UK SPOs
If you have more to add to this please contact me via the contacts page. All contributions are welcome to get the facts right.
Do the numbers add up?
A truly worthwhile initiative out there is the Armed Forces Covenant; a promise by the nation ensuring that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly.
The UK's Defence Relationship Management (DRM) "partners with organisations throughout the UK, helping them understand the value of signing this Armed Forces Covenant and building mutually beneficial partnerships with Defence. It provides support on employing Reservists, veterans, Cadet Force Adult Volunteers and military spouses and improving fairness for the Armed Forces community in the consumer market."*
On their government website it displays the worthwhile work they put into supporting our UK military. However, there's more that could be done regarding the "military spouses" pledge they make. On the site, useful resources for HR teams are packaged so as to help support Reservists in work; people who sacrifice and deliver invaluable support to our UK defences. But where's the HR support for SPOs? There isn’t any, and this is where the SPO Voice can make a difference. We need to get this type of imbalance redressed because the statistics speak for themselves:
The House of Commons Library states that in 2021 there are 32,300 Reservists. Assuming all are in employment,
for every Reservist
there are 2.5 SPOs in employment **
32,300 Reservists - 78,800 SPOs
** Consulting the UK Regular Armed Forces Continuous Attitude Survey Results 2021: 68% of military SPOs were either in full-time or part-time employment.
So how much do you know about what you’re getting into or got into?
We've created a quick quiz as part of our research to highlight how little is known about the military. Please take 2 minutes to have a go and help our voices be heard.
If you have any questions, amends or suggestions about this quiz (as you can see some of the information is dated - stats are hard to find!) feel free to contact us. Your voice will make a difference.
Tick what you know (Pssst many of us struggled to tick any!).
We won't pass on your details to anyone - for more information please read Our privacy / data protection policy
Stats taken from government sources:
Families Federation Factsheet 2015
UK Defence personnel statistics 2021
So, you must have known what you were getting into when you got together?!
Nope? Neither did the other 116,000 SPOs out there ...
We simply fell in love
Help other SPOs out there, navigate the world of SPO life and help make a difference to their well being. Together our voice will become very loud and we can help drive policy changes that will make a difference ...