Royal Navy personnel threaten to resign over lifting of homosexual ban

A number of lower-ranking officers in the Royal Navy have threatened protest resignations following a lift on the banning of gay personnel in the military, according to a secret document obtained by The Times.

The newspaper reported that soldiers were so reluctant to expose themselves in the presence of their homosexual colleagues that they requested the provision of homosexual-only showers and lavatories.

RAF couples also expressed concern that same-sex partners would be allowed to move into family quarters and influence their children.

The ban on homosexuals in the UK armed forces was lifted in January 2000 after the European Court of Human Rights ruled that the ban interfered with private life.

Cases of bullying or harassment involving homosexuals in the services were described as very rare in the report, with only a single complaint of an unwanted homosexual approach, in the RAF.

In January the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) said it would scrutinise the progress made in fighting sexual harassment in the Armed Forces.

The Ministry of Defence concluded that the change has had no impact on operational effectiveness, team cohesion or service life, according to the Times.




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