Back to top

Army's £10,000 'golden hellos' are a futile attempt to tackle recruitment crisis

British soldiers in training

Army's £10,000 'golden hellos' are a futile attempt to tackle recruitment crisis

The army has been accused of pouring taxpayers' money into despearte and wasteful recruitment efforts, following news of £10,000 "golden hellos" to persuade former soldiers to re-enlist.

While the practice has gone on for some time, it has hit the headlines after the revelation that £10,000 has in some cases been offered to soldiers who were "dishonourably discharged" from the army for drug offences. 

The Peace Pledge Union (PPU) said that it shows how desperate the army's leadership is to solve their recruitment crisis. They have been failing to meet recruitment targets for several years. 

The news follows other bizarre attempts to solve recruitment problems, including changing the army's rules on facial hair, offering "flexible working" to soldiers, claiming that the army promotes gender equality and targetting 16-year-olds who have failed their exams with messages on social media on exam results day. 

The PPU said that the money would be better spent tackling the underlying causes of war and insecurity, including global poverty and inequality.

PPU spokesperson Symon Hill said, "Military leaders are spending millions of pounds of taxpayers' money on their fantasy of meeting their unacheivable recruitment targets. Every few weeks brings another bizarre story showing how desperate they're getting, ranging from allowing soldiers to have beards to blaming social media use for young people's unwillingness to enlist. They never seem to stop to ask why young people are unwilling to sign up for unquestioning obedience and to hand their conscience over to the government. 

"Armed forces don't make us safer. They make the whole world less safe. Let's spend this money on things that really make us secure, such as tackling poverty and cllimate change."