President of the Defence Forces representative body Pdforra has said conditions for members are so bad that 80 naval personnel are living on (ships), some of which were deemed to be unsuitable for accommodation when they were commissioned 35 years ago.
As The Irish Times reports, Mark Keane told the organisation’s annual conference in the Mount Wolseley Estate in Co Carlow yesterday that “soldiers, sailors and airmen” should have an accommodation allowance, similar to that available to gardaí, prison officers and fire officers.
However, accommodation was just one of a number of issues, including pay, promotion and medical care, which he said must be addressed to stem the outflow of key personnel from the Defence Forces generally.
Numbers in the Defence Forces have recently fallen by more than 600 to some 8,500, which he said was “well below the numbers required” to execute their tasks efficiently and safely.
He said numbers must be addressed as the “goodwill and esprit de corps is being eroded further as those left behind must pick up the pieces”.
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