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Stop Para Pay Cuts

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We the undersigned petition the Government to stop the proposed cuts to ‘Para Pay’. This is a specialist skills pay awarded to soldiers who complete 'P' Company selection and the Basic Parachute Course (BPC), to become qualified serving paratroopers. Cutting Para Pay on the grounds of cost saving is not justified. Will the MOD then also look to cut the trade pay of any other military trades e.g. Carpenters\Mechanics or Divers etc, not permanently engaged in their particular skills? We feel that this cut will adversely affect troops morale which is already at a very low level across the army. It is important to maintain the Airborne ethos as we have a totally different mentality to other “ground role” units as can be seen in the following extract from a friend of ours who fought in an earlier campaign: “...the Jnco's that led the lads into each trench & bunker to close with the enemy & destroy him. The will to win was never in doubt. No one doubted that we would win & that completely validates our training & the aggressiveness that is instilled in us all. That the mission is paramount is driven into our very psyche from the beginning. The combination of P Coy, the BPC and an immense pride in our Airborne status is what makes the difference and drives us all in everything we do both in the army and in civilian life.” Many argue that the Para’s do not jump into battle these days. Within the past year in Afghanistan, a Para unit completed an operational decent. The ‘Para Pay’ is in reality the cost of maintaining the Airborne capability and ethos and therefore very high standards, this is borne out by the fact that the vast majority who attempt the course fail. If you want the best you have to pay the price, and the price in this instance it is relatively negligible.

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