IN OUR 2020 Big Survey we asked you to share your views about the Future Accommodation Model – the future of housing for army families. We heard from a diverse mix of spouses and partners, service personnel and dual serving families.

Results showed that whilst FAM offered greater choice for some, there remained concern about its compatibility with a mobile army lifestyle.

Support for SFA

If Service Family Accommodation (SFA) was reduced, 49 per cent of respondents told us they would consider leaving the army, and 26 per cent said they would definitely leave.

One family said: “SFA is a large part of what attracts my family to the army. It provides support whilst I’m deployed
and is a familiar environment when moving around. I would leave if my family couldn’t have the ease of moving which SFA provides.”

Patch life is valued

More than two-thirds of respondents said that the removal of the patch would have either some or a significant negative impact on their ability to cope with frequent moves. A similar number thought it would have an impact on their ability to cope if their service person was deployed.

A respondent commented: “Having a house that’s in good condition and appropriate for your needs, close to your
work with a ready-made community ready to welcome you removes so much stress from the assignment process.”

You were clear that, if offered a choice of housing under FAM, the majority would choose SFA.

Communication

The survey found that 82 per cent of you said you’d received little or no communication about FAM. Spouses and partners felt less informed than personnel.

Pros and cons

People felt that the positives were that FAM widens the entitlement to unmarried families and offers more choice, but the negatives were that it doesn’t work for families who face frequent mobility and it removes the military community many rely on for support.

What’s next?

AFF is continuing to work with the chain of command and the MOD to ensure that those involved in the FAM policy
understand the evidence and views from army families. There’s more detail available on the AFF
website – aff.org.uk and if you have any concerns or feedback, do contact us at housingsupport@aff.org.uk

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