Anonymous stockshot

Military Personnel Told Not To 'Take The Knee' Whilst In Uniform

It comes after Defence Secretary Ben Wallace insisted the Armed Forces needs to address its “woeful” record on BAME issues.

Anonymous stockshot

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) has told Armed Forces personnel not to 'take the knee' in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement whilst on duty and in uniform.

An MOD spokesperson insisted the guidance is to avoid political statements.

The spokesperson told Forces News: "The MOD does not tolerate racism and promotes diversity and equality.

"The recent protests have reminded us that we all have a role to play shaping a better society.”

It comes after the Defence Secretary said the MOD has “not done well enough” in addressing issues facing Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) groups.

Ben Wallace added the military has "not recruited enough people” from a BAME background or made the Armed Forces a “welcoming place for enough people".

Despite the MOD's policy, military personnel do take part in Pride events in support of the LGBTQ+ community while in uniform.

Recent Black Lives Matter protests in the UK have seen members of police forces take the knee.

Premier League footballers have also taken the knee at the start of matches since the league restarted. 

Taking the knee has become a popular way of supporting the Black Lives Matter movement following the death of George Floyd in police custody in the US at the end of May. 

The symbolic gesture first started after American Footballer Colin Kaepernick knelt during the US national anthem at a match in August 2016 in protest over police brutality and racism.