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Social Mobility

Volume 673: debated on Monday 16 March 2020

We aim to attract talent from the widest possible base across the UK, regardless of socio-economic background, educational status or ethnicity. The skills, education, training and experience provided enable recruits to progress as far as their aptitude will take them, and benefit from promotion based on merit.

New data reveals that there are nearly as many cadet forces in fee-paying schools as in the entire state system, despite just 7% of the UK population being privately educated. To ensure greater social mobility in our forces, will the Minister tell the House what his Department is doing to increase the number of combined cadet forces in state schools?

The Government are committed to establishing 500 new cadet forces across the country, with a big focus on state schools. We are absolutely clear that people’s socioeconomic background has absolutely zero to do with their opportunity to serve. The opportunities of service are there for everybody.