Stop recruitment of 16 year olds into the UK armed forces

Twitter icon
Facebook icon
Google icon
e-mail icon

We call on the UK Government to stop its policy of allowing 15 year olds to apply and 16 and 17 year olds to be recruited into the Armed Forces. The recruitment and targeting of young people and vulnerable groups has been criticised by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child. 2014 is the year to end this policy.

Why is this important?

What better way to commit our country to peace during the commemoration of World War One and remember the hundreds of thousands who died from the UK alone, including boy soldiers like Rifleman V J Strudwick who was killed at 15? Why is it that in 2014 the UK is the only country in Europe - and the only country among the permanent members of the UN Security Council - to recruit 16 year olds into its armed forces?

Initiated by Pax Christi and supported by:
Baptist Peace Fellowship, Child Soldiers International, Christian CND, Columban Justice Peace & Integrity of Creation, Conscience, Edinburgh Peace & Justice Centre, Fellowship of Reconciliation, ForcesWatch, Movement for the Abolition of War, National Justice & Peace Network, National Union of Teachers, Network for Peace, Northern Friends Peace Board, Peace Education Network, Peace Pledge Union, Quaker Peace & Social Witness, Student Christian Movement, United Reformed Church Peace Fellowship, War Resisters International, Woodcraft Folk, Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom

How it will be delivered

The petition will be handed to the Ministry of Defence in latter part of 2014. To date we also have 3,000 signatures on the paper petition.Help us to reach 10,000!

Paper copies of this petition are also available - email or download from

. . For more information see

Sign the petition:

Geographic terms: