Monday, 27 February 2012

Teddy bear from the UK soldier charity

[Homeless Teddy]
Thanks for putting yourself in harm's way, Teddy, but we can't afford to house your
family while you're off fighting. Not if they're in London.

[Landmine Teddy]
It's like Humpty Dumpty. You can't put Landmine Teddy back together again.

He's a right mess.

IshitUnot: London Evening Standard
Army families 'will struggle' as London living allowance is cut
Craig Woodhouse, Political Correspondent
25 Jan 2012

Servicemen and women are being stripped of a £120-a-month allowance paid to help with the high cost of living in the capital, it emerged today.

About 2,000 troops will lose out when the London weighting is removed in April as part of cost-cutting at the Ministry of Defence.

Personnel at the rank of sergeant and above, whose pay starts at about £30,000, will see the payment disappear - saving £2.9 million a year.
The allowance has been protected for lower-paid members of the armed forces, with corporals and below not affected. Catherine Spencer, of the Army Families Federation, said losing the allowance was "regrettable".

"It definitely helps make up the cost of living in London, so it is something that families will struggle with but have to accept." The revelation that the London allowance is being cut came as MPs attacked a "grotesque" cuts process which has seen no civilian staff forced out of a job while 40 per cent of military redundancies have been

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond described the claims as "simply wrong". He said members of the forces were being given "every opportunity" to retrain but that compulsory redundancies were needed because not enough volunteers had come forward.

Tens of thousands of troops and civilian staff are being cut as part of efforts to plug a £38 billion hole in the defence budget.

Allowances are being slashed by £250 million a year. MoD officials insisted it was "fair and appropriate" to cut the £120-a-month living allowance to higher-earning troops, which is given to people living within eight miles of central London.About 5,000 personnel claim the allowance, costing £6.3 million a year.

Tehran was warned today not to trigger a conflict as tensions increased in the Gulf. Former defence secretary Liam Fox said that Iran could spark a clash if its navy was not properly controlled.

He told BBC radio: "We've had incidents where they have been going straight for our ships. A miscalculation could lead to unexpected conflict."