The UK Government has outsourced the duties of recruitment for our Armed Forces to private firm Capita – the same firm that has been awarded government contracts in the past for benefit payments.
Since they have had this contract they have missed targets for recruitment. That is why I wanted the minister to tell the House how much it would cost us to withdraw the contract and if the UK Government has any plans to do so.
We cannot have an underfunded or an under-staffed Armed Forces and if Capita cannot recruit the people we need they should have the contract removed.
NATO keeps Europe and the North Atlantic safe from international actors who may want grab land or nations for themselves through war. We have seen what Russia can do with Ukraine and it is important that we maintain the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.
I wanted to know what the UK Defence Secretary hoped that President Trump would say to President Putin when they meet. There have been worrying signs that President Trump wants to erode our defence structures away. This will put us and our allies at risk and the UK Government should be doing all they can to ensure this does not come to pass.
Next week I will be hosting a launch event in Parliament of a new charity which will be constructing a national memorial for Armed Forces animals in Brynford.
National Military Working Dog Memorial UK is raising £150,000 to build the UK’s first purpose built memorial to service animals. The event I will be hosting in Parliament will bring together members of our Armed Forces, MPs, Peers and key representatives from the Armed Forces bodies.
I asked the minister during defence questions if he would support this initiative and if the Government will support this excellent new charity.
Despite the slight confusion at the start of my question – we were informed that Defence Questions would have to last longer to ensure an MP could get to the Commons to ask her Urgent Question – I asked the minister of Defence what action the Government is taking to support our NATO allies in the Baltic states.
The growing threat from nations, such as Russia, to our allies in the Baltic states is serious and we need to ensure that we give them the support they need. I was concerned that in a recent parliamentary question it was revealed that we have not been allowing as many people from our NATO allies to attend our world class military training facilities.
I was pleased that the minister said he will take action. It is important that we as a nation stand shoulder to shoulder with our allies in difficult times.