Becky Kealy: Irish Defence Forces Continually Disrespected by Their Own Government
Aontú Rep for Cork North-West, Becky Kealy has called for greater respect and better treatment of our Defence Forces by the Irish government, as thousands quit year on year.
Becky Kealy: “It is really is a national disgrace to see the disrespect and mistreatment our Defence Forces are subjected to by their own elected representatives in government. For all of us who have friends and family in the Defence Forces, it is gut-wrenching to see first-hand what they are put through. Reports of Defence Forces sleeping in their cars, working four jobs, or having to choose a sustainable income over serving their income are sadly not the exception but the norm.”
“My own Grandfather proudly served in the Defence Forces and in 2019 was put up in the ‘Hall of Heores’ in Collins Barracks in Cork for his bravery whilst serving tin the Congo. A Military Ceremony was held honouring the recipients of Irish military medals, Dada was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal for his bravery and years of service. His example and his bravery instilled in me the timeless importance of public service and of the heroic service of our Defence Forces.”
“Pay & Conditions for Defence Forces are abysmal, with the government refusing to honour a technical pay agreement concluded over a year ago – whilst pay remains at levels which insult the service of our men and women in uniform. Naval service operations regularly cannot go ahead due to lack of personnel. Barrack conditions are an absolute disgrace. The list goes on. Yet the government have only too readily jumped at the opportunity to contribute taxpayer funds to a €5 billion EU Defence Initiative. Only in Ireland, could thousands of troops be leaving our Defence Forces year on year, but our own government is more interested in contributing to some Defence Initiative out of Brussels rather than paying our own troops. Our troops deserve better – from their own government.”