Mental health stigma causes recruiters to 'worry' about hiring Ex-Armed Forces personnel

Just under half of the recruiters are worried about hiring someone who used to serve in the army due to the fact they may suffer from mental health issues.

An armed forces charity, SSAFA survey found that 46 per cent worry about hiring someone who used to serve in the army due to the stigma surrounding mental health.

The charity also found that 52 per cent of UK employees would not feel comfortable working alongside a service leaver, as well as 8 per cent associating former servicemen and women with being aggressive.

Just under a third (31 per cent) of recruiters also said they feel reluctant to hire someone who has served in the Armed Forces.

In light of this, the SSAFA has launched a campaign called Friendly to Forces, which is an initiative that encourages companies in the UK to sign up and show support and willingness to hire people who used to serve in the army.

The SSAFA campaign will direct applicants to Friendly to Forces employers. The charity noted how despite efforts from both Prince Harry and Prince William “negative perceptions about mental health remain a significant barrier in the recruitment process” for those who have served in the army.

Amanda Fisher, managing director facilities management defence and justice at Amey, an infrastructure support service provider said:

We’ve been recruiting Forces leavers for over 15 years and will always continue to value the dedication and enthusiasm that comes with this background. They bring many qualities to our business including a ‘can do’ attitude and transferable skills that make for a successful team dynamic.

In June, this year, SIG Distribution, a supplier of building materials said how ex-Armed Forces personnel make ideal candidates for careers in construction and logistics due to the transferable skills they bring to the job.

This survey was carried out by Censuswide, the survey consultants on behalf of SSAFA who asked 2,197 UK employees and 250 recruiters.





Darius is the editor of HRreview. He has previously worked as a finance reporter for the Daily Express. He studied his journalism masters at Press Association Training and graduated from the University of York with a degree in History.