Former officer says military personnel covering strikes deserve bonuses as campaign is launched

A campaign has been launched for military personnel called in to cover striking workers to get a daily bonus for their efforts.

It comes after it was confirmed 750 military personnel are set to be deployed to cover ambulance strikes as the UK prepares to be hit by a wave of industrial action in the coming weeks.

Former commanding officer of 1st Battalion Scots Guards, Colonel (retired) Lincoln Jopp, says the bonus for covering Armed Forces personnel could come out of the money saved by Government departments not paying those on strike.

Col Jopp suggested £20 per person per day would be adequate.

He told Forces News: "Let's face it, when not deployed on operations, members of our Armed Forces should be doing one of two things – either training or being with their families.

"There is an opportunity cost, whether it's missed training or missed family time, and I don't think it's inappropriate for them to get a little, a little bit, of extra money in order to make up for that."

He Jopp added: "One of the ironies of whenever the military stands in for other personnel in cases of industrial action is that they're usually being paid less than the people who are going on strike before they've got the pay rise for which they're going on strike."

When the UK's Armed Forces provide support to civil authorities, it is officially termed as Military Aid to the Civil Authorities, or Maca.

The Maca legislation allows the UK Government to call on the military to assist in times of emergency and to share the burden with civil organisations such as the police service, fire service, Border Force and the National Health Service.

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