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Concern for future of Defence Forces as one-in-five see themselves retiring by 35

One-in-five young Defence Forces officers see themselves retiring at or before the age of 35, according to an independent survey carried out on behalf of their representative association.

This highlights a potential significant decline in trained and experienced officers over the next 10-15 years.

The Representative Association for Commissioned Officers (RACO) said the findings of a report carried out by Amárach Research give it cause for great concern about the future of the Defence Forces as these people are supposed to be its future leaders.

Fianna Fáil spokesman on Defence, Jack Chambers, said the instability posed by the ongoing retention crisis within the Defence Forces has been raised with both the Government and the Minister for Defence, Paul Kehoe time and time again: “It's an eye-opener when you consider officers who have pursued a vocation, spent years in training and education, and made substantial personal sacrifices to serve our State, are desperate to get out."