The RAF Has Become The First Branch Of The British Military To Open Every Single Role To Women

The ban on women fighting on the front line for the British army was lifted last year. From today, you can apply to the RAF.

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From today, the Royal Air Force is accepting female soldiers into its ground-fighting force for the first time ever.

Last year, a ban on women serving on the front line was lifted by former Prime Minister David Cameron. By accepting women into these roles, the RAF has become the first branch of the British military to open up every single role equally to both men and women, the BBC reports.

When the ban was lifted it meant women could now be part of the cavalry (soldiers on horses), infantry (soldiers on foot) and armoured corps (soldiers who drive and fight from army tanks and vehicles) - roles previously reserved for men only.

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The RAF ground-fighting force, which is also known as the RAF regiment, is mainly responsible for patrolling and protecting RAF bases and airfields both at home and overseas. Specific roles now open to women include RAF regiment gunner and RAF regiment officer, a more senior role who leads a squadron of soldiers in their missions.

The decision to open applications for the RAF regiment from September was announced by the Defence Secretary Michael Fallon in July.

Speaking at an RAF conference in London, he said: 'A diverse force is a more operationally effective force. So I'm delighted that the RAF Regiment will be open to recruitment to women from September.

'Individuals who are capable of meeting the standards for the regiment will be given the opportunity to serve, regardless of their gender. This is a defining moment for the RAF as it becomes the first service to have every trade and branch open to both genders.'

Hopefully, the rest of the military will now follow suit. According to the BBC, some women have already joined the Royal Armoured Corps division of the army since the ban was lifted. It will not be until next year that women can apply to hold similar positions in the navy.

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