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Armed Forces: Harmony Guidelines

Volume 718: debated on Tuesday 9 March 2010


Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what action they are taking to reduce the number of cases within Her Majesty's Armed Forces which exceed the Harmony Guidelines for the length of time of service and deployment. [HL2480]

We fully recognise the importance of ensuring that service personnel do not spend an undue proportion of their time on separated service or operational deployments, which is why harmony guidelines are maintained. Unfortunately, at a time of high operational commitment, breaches of harmony guidelines do occur, but initiatives and regulators are used to help ameliorate the situation. These include flexible appointing between ranks, mobilisation of Reservists, financial retention and re-engagement incentives, contractorisation and reviewing the numbers of posts required for each operation on a regular basis. In addition, longer-term initiatives are used to promote increases in training, recruitment and retention.