Thursday, 25 October 2018

Ceisteanna (66, 67)

Jack Chambers

Ceist:

66. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of additional recruits the Permanent Defence Force has taken to date in 2018 with regard to all three services; the gender breakdown of same in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44407/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Jack Chambers

Ceist:

67. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of additional recruits the Defence Forces Reserve has taken to date 2018 with regard to all services; the gender breakdown of same in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44408/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Defence)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 66 and 67 together.

The table sets out the number of recruits inducted into the Permanent Defence Force in 2018 (as of 24 October 2018), together with a gender breakdown:

 

Male

Female

Total 

Army

239

9

248 

Naval   Service

56

7

63 

Air   Corps

20

0

20 

Total

315

16

 331

In addition to the above, 85 cadets of which nine are female have been inducted this year.

The Government remains committed to returning to, and maintaining the agreed strength of the Permanent Defence Force at 9,500 personnel as set out in the White Paper on Defence (2015).

In order to achieve this target, there are significant recruitment opportunities available in the Permanent Defence Force, at both enlisted and officer level, for eligible individuals who wish to have a rewarding and positive career in service to the State. The Permanent Defence Force continues to offer excellent career opportunities for serving personnel and for new entrants. General service recruitment campaigns, an officer cadetships competition, a competition for Air Corps apprentices, a competition for DF School of Music instrumentalists and the 2018 RDF recruitment campaigns all took place this year.

Arising from the general service recruitment campaign held earlier this year, new recruits will be inducted between September and end November. 

A second general service recruitment campaign was launched on 10 September 2018 and closed on 7 October 2018.

Final figures for numbers enlisted in 2018 will not be available until after year's end. The bulk of inductions are weighted towards the second half of the year. Recruitment progress will be reviewed at year end and this will also inform the approach in 2019.

The table sets out the number of inductions to the Reserve Defence Force in 2018 (as of 24 October 2018), together with a gender breakdown of same:

 

Male 

Female

 Total

Army   Reserve

102

13

 115

Naval   Service Reserve

11

2

 13

Total

113

15

 128

A total of 1,363 applications were received for the recent RDF General Service Recruitment campaign.  Applications for this recruitment campaign, which ran between 23 April and 4 June 2018, are currently being processed.

I can assure the Deputy that I remain committed to the on-going development of the RDF within the framework set out in the White Paper on Defence.