Update On High Level Action Plan for the Report of the Commission on the Defence Forces


The Tánaiste and Minister for Defence Micheál Martin has published a comprehensive update on the status of each of the 38 early actions set out in the High Level Action Plan for the report of the Commission on the Defence Forces.

The report of the Commission on the Defence Forces was published on 9 February 2022. Given the significant recommendations contained in the Report, a detailed consideration was undertaken by the Department of Defence and the Defence Forces, and 38 early actions identified.

A High Level Action Plan, containing these 38 early actions, was approved by Government last year and since then work has focussed on putting in place the foundations and structures to support the journey of transformative change in the Defence Forces.

To date, 80% of the early actions have been completed, with substantial progress made on the remainder. This provides the building blocks for the development of a detailed implementation plan up to 2028.

The development of the detailed implementation plan is currently at an advanced stage.

Tánaiste and Minister for Defence Micheál Martin said, “it is a priority that this plan is both ambitious and credible if we are to realise the necessary transformation of the Defence Forces. The plan is at an advanced stage and it is important that it is completed as soon as possible, but even more important that we get it right.\”

“This is a once-in-a-generation transformation, and efforts of this scale take time, energy and unwavering commitment from all stakeholders. I am confident that we can and will build on the strong foundations developed over the last 12 months and realise our shared ambition for a transformed Defence Forces.”

Key early actions completed to date include:

  • Two new civilian appointments for Head of Strategic HR and Head of Transformation were advertised and progressed.
  • Implementation and governance structures developed and initiated including the establishment of an Implementation Oversight Group with an independent chair (Ms. Julie Sinnamon appointed).
  • A number of HR measures including Temporary Associate Membership of ICTU and pay and allowance structures delivered including:

(a) Removing the requirement for a 3 Star Private/Able Seaman to ‘mark time’ for the first three years at that rank.

(b) Ensuring that all personnel of Private 3 Star/Able Seaman rank are paid the full rate of MSA applicable to the rank.

  • Recruitment and induction strategies developed encompassing advertising, expanded recruitment and induction capacity.
  • Establishment of the Office of Reserve Affairs.

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