Dáil Éireann - Volume 611 - 07 December, 2005

Written Answers. - Defence Forces Deployment.

  74. Mr. Gilmore asked the Minister for Defence the number of personnel deployed in the Army’s Ranger Wing; the number of men and women who are deployed; if women who have applied for selection to the Ranger Wing have made it through the training course; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [38162/05]

  Mr. Kitt: The Government is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for men and women in the Defence Forces and to the full participation by women in all aspects of Defence Forces activities. The military authorities have advised that detailed records of the number of applicants for the Army Ranger Wing are not maintained. However, since 2000 approximately 240 personnel, including one female, undertook the Army Ranger Wing selection course. Of these 50 — males — were successful. There are currently no female personnel serving in the Army Ranger Wing.

There is an existing policy of ongoing recruitment to the Army Ranger Wing. Selection courses are held periodically and successful candidates are then taken into the Army Ranger Wing. The next selection course is due to be held in early 2006. It is not known at this time how many personnel are likely to be successful on this course. The military authorities advise that the number of personnel serving in the Army Ranger Wing is fewer than 75.

Question No. 75 answered with Question No. 63.

Question No. 76 answered with Question No. 71.