All British Military Roles Open for Women

IndraStra Global

All British Military Roles Open for Women

By IndraStra Global News Team

Image Attribute: On a visit to Salisbury Plain on 25 October, during which he announced that all roles in the UK military would be open to women, UK Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson talks to Lance Corporal Kat Dixon, who serves with the Royal Wessex Yeomanry and is the first female tank gunner in her regiment, having joined the army reserves two-and-a-half years ago. (Crown Copyright)

Image Attribute: On a visit to Salisbury Plain on 25 October, during which he announced that all roles in the UK military would be open to women, UK Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson talks to Lance Corporal Kat Dixon, who serves with the Royal Wessex Yeomanry and is the first female tank gunner in her regiment, having joined the army reserves two-and-a-half years ago. (Crown Copyright)

On October 25, 2018, UK's Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has announced the opening of all roles for the women in the British Armed Forces – including the infantry and special forces units such as Special Air Service (SAS).

While speaking at a firepower demonstration on Salisbury Plain, he said: "Women have led the way with exemplary service in the armed forces for over 100 years, working in a variety of specialist and vital roles. So I am delighted that from today, for the first time in its history, our armed forces will be determined by ability alone and not gender. Opening all combat roles to women will not only make the armed forces a more modern employer but will ensure we recruit the right person for the right role."

In the year 2016, A ban on female soldiers serving in close combat units, including the Royal Armoured Corps, was lifted which was followed by the opening of RAF Regiment for the women in September 2017. But, enlisted women were not allowed to serve in front-line infantry units where they would be expected to "close and kill the enemy". Now, the opening of roles for women in close combat has been phased out.

Williamson told BBC News: "We very much expect women to be joining the SAS and the Special Boat Service.

"The value that they'll bring, the impact they'll make will be phenomenal and all the services are looking forward to welcoming them."

EXPECTED TIMELINE:
  • The new women recruits will be starting basic training for infantry roles in April 2019, application process will start from December 2018.
  • Also, women are now able to apply to join the Royal Marines, with selection starting before the end of this year.
With reporting by BBC News, Daily Mail, and Reuters.