The Army Families Federation (AFF) has partnered with the University of Warwick's Institute for Employment Research (IER) on a new research project exploring real and perceived barriers to employment for Army families.
The IER was chosen through a competitive tender process. The project will include surveys and interviews with Army spouses and key stakeholders to find out more about the support needed to assist military families into fulfilling careers.
Dr Clare Lyonette, Principal Research Fellow at the IER, said: “We are very excited to work on this project for AFF, which will assist them in identifying any barriers that currently prevent military spouses from gaining and maintaining meaningful employment, and to help formulate recommendations for new and effective support services.
“Military spouses and partners have a variety of skills such as resourcefulness, adaptability and good communication skills, which are highly valued. Any pre-conceived ideas about military spouses can exclude a potentially valuable group of employees from the labour market.”
AFF Chief Executive Sara Baade said: “With generous funding from LIBOR, we are now able to dig deeper into the issues surrounding spousal employment. We hope to obtain more robust evidence to help us achieve positive change for Army families who want to work, want to improve their skills, but are prevented from doing so for a range of reasons
The employment research will involve looking at employment statistics, and making comparisons with civilian counterparts to gain a better understanding of the similarities and differences these families are faced with."
Spousal employment has long been a focus for AFF, who continue to receive evidence from families that persistent challenges in this area remain. While the evidence they have gained so far has been shared with chain of command and policy makers, the charity believes there is more work to be done, and that a fresh approach is needed to bring about positive, tangible change for those supporting their soldier.
The Employment Research project will feature surveys and interviews with families, key stakeholders and employers. Work has already begun on this project and is due to be completed by April 2018.
21 November 2017
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Click here for more details of the project.