'No need for staff association, because service family federations do a very good job on behalf of forces personnel'
Opposing a Private Member's Bill to authorise an armed forces representative body, a former defence minister argued that in addition to service charities there already are "a plethora of existing families federations across each of the services that do a very good job and exist to advocate on behalf of forces personnel and their families".
The former minister Philip Dunne MP (Con, Ludlow) also stated that the Secretary of State is working "through the families federations" "to try to bring up to contemporary standards some of the historical garrison accommodation, some of which is not only decades old, but goes back over 100 years."
The "Bill to create a staff association to represent the interests of members of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces as employees" has been introduced in Parliament by Martin Docherty-Hughes MP under the short title of "Armed Forces Representative Body Bill". The Bill had its first reading in Parliament on 20th June, 2018 and is due to receive its second reading on 23rd November.
Martin Docherty-Hughes (SNP) is the MP for West Dunbartonshire, and a member of the House of Commons Defence Committee.
Most Private Member's Bills introduced under the so-called Ten Minute Rule don't get passed into actual legislation - although some do.
Expressing the hope that other parties would support his Bill, Mr Docherty-Hughes acknowledged Kevan Jones MP (Lab), who had presented an Armed Forces (Federation) Bill with similar aims nearly ten years before.
The short first-reading debate can be read here: Hansard 20th June 2018 - Armed Forces Representative Body.
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