Resources

Armed forces visits to schools in Scotland: An update for 2016-2017

November 2017
This ForcesWatch briefing analyses data on armed forces visits to schools in Scotland for 2016-17.

The First Ambush: Effects of army training and employment

June 2017
This report from Veterans For Peace UK details how the Army's training process has a forceful impact on attitudes, health, and behaviour even before recruits are sent to war. The findings show that military training and culture combine with pre-existing issues (such as a childhood history of anti-social behaviour) to increase the risk of violence and alcohol misuse. Traumatic war experiences further exacerbate the problem.

Soldiers at 16 – The other side of the story

January 2017
Featured Video Play Icon Army adverts don't tell you what being a soldier is really like.  

Should the military be promoted in schools?

updated 2017
The armed forces have a growing involvement in secondary schools, colleges and even primary schools. While the Army, Navy and RAF have long run activities in schools as part of the Ministry of Defence's Youth Engagement programme, the Department for Education promotes 'military ethos' within education, and parts of the armed forces, along with the arms industry, are developing their involvement with curriculum provision and sponsorship of education institutions. This A4 leaflet (updated 2017) outlines the issue and what the concerns are. This A4 leaflet (updated 2017) outlines the issue and what the concerns are.

Does the military give young people a ‘leg up’? The armed forces and social mobility

May 2017

This briefing explores if these claims about social mobility stand up to scrutiny or whether enlisting in the armed forces can have a negative impact upon social mobility, particularly for very young recruits.


Answering difficult questions about militarism

February 2017
With the presence of the military in public spaces increasing and a high level of popularity for the armed forces, it is not always easy to respond to challenging questions that people pose in when faced with concerns expressed about militarism. In this briefing we explore some responses to questions about how much the armed forces should be involved in our everyday lives, how they relate to young people, and the effectiveness and consequences of military action.

Science for Society

January 2017
Science4Society Week is a collection of science education activities, co-ordinated by Scientists for Global Responsibility, and designed to inspire young people. It takes place in March each year.

Is it Counterproductive to Enlist Minors into the Army?

December 2016
This article, written by Child Soldiers International and published in the Royal United Service Institute Journal, argues that raising the UK enlistment age from 16 to 18 would bring benefits to young people and the British armed forces. The article explains that the UK’s low enlistment age is counterproductive internationally, as it implies to other countries that it is acceptable to use children under the age of 18 to staff national armed forces.  

Quakers in Britain

The Quakers work on peace education, as well as other peace issues - carrying it out in schools and promoting it as a necessary part of the curriculum. See here for current Quaker projects, peace education resources and their partner organisations.

Rethinking Remembrance in Schools

November 2016
This paper, published by ForcesWatch, explores ways in which teaching remembrance in schools can be used as a way of encouraging critical thinking about what and how we remember, and how this can be used to foster a culture of peace.

Talks about militarism from MAW Youth conference

October 2016
Featured Video Play Icon Listen to talks given by David Gee (writer on militarism and campaigning to raise the age of recruiting into the UK armed forces) and Ben Griffin (Veterans for Peace UK) from the conference on Creeping Militarisation of Everyday Life organised by Movement for the Abolition of War Youth.

The Recruitment of Children by the UK Armed Forces: a Critique from Health Professionals

October 2016
Medact’s report on the long-term impacts of the British military’s recruitment of children under the age of 18, presents evidence linking ‘serious health concerns’ with the policy, and calls for a rise in the minimum recruitment age. It looks at the psychological and psychosocial vulnerabilities of adolescents in the context of military recruitment marketing strategies and making long-term risky decisions and examines the evidence that under 18 recruits face greater risks to health than adult recruits, across the course of an armed forces career.

UN observations on UK and childrens’ rights

June 2016
The Committee on the Rights of the Child recently reviewed the UK's position on implementing the articles and protocols of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. They made a number of recommendations relating to the armed forces recruitment of under-18s and the military's activities in schools.

Soldiers at 16: Sifting fact from fiction

March 2016
Published by Child Soldiers International, this short and accessible booklet addresses questions often raised about under-18s in the armed forces, presenting the facts - based on extensive research - rather than the fiction. Also contains very useful quotes and statistics. Great when talking to your MP or for those thinking of enlisting!

The British armed forces: Why parental consent safeguards are inadequate

2016
This briefing from Child Soldiers International explains why the armed forces cannot be confident that they routinely have the informed consent of parents before their child enlists, or that a child’s enlistment is “genuinely voluntary” in a meaningful sense.