Army drive to target womenThe Australian Army has launched a new recruitment drive for women.
The Women in the Army campaign is part of an initiative to increase the number of women serving from 10 per cent to 12 per cent by 2014.
Minister for Defence Science and Personnel, Warren Snowdon said the Army had removed a range of restrictions that would encourage talented, capable women to join the ADF.
“The removal of gender restrictions signals a key milestone in the significant cultural change we are seeing in Defence – and this will make a real difference in our ability to attract women in to the Defence force and keep them there,” Mr Snowdon said.
Chief of Army, Lieutenant General David Morrison said that for the first time Army had set specific targets for the recruitment of women.
“My major goal for Army is to substantially increase the number of women in the Australian Regular Army, from its current level of approximately 3,000 to 3,600 by mid-2014,” Lieutenant General Morrison said.
“While this increase may appear small, it represents a considerable challenge for us and the changes we will make to implement this increase will set the pre-conditions for subsequent growth.
“We have worked hard to remove barriers that women face when they consider a career in Army.
“In particular, we are trialling a 12-month Initial Minimum Period of Service for selected trades and we are working to offer a pre-enlistment training fitness program for women candidates to improve their chances of success.”
He said the Army was also focussed on retaining women within its ranks and was working with the other Services and Groups to engage its service women to better understand their needs.
“The result has been the implementation of flexible working initiatives that better support families, such as increased carer’s leave, shared leave between Service couples and the consideration of childcare options,” he said.
“We are also reviewing how career management supports the retention of women in Army, with a view to better accommodating career development and family responsibilities.”
Edition 353, 19 March 2013