RAF recruitment boss quits in diversity row over 'effective pause on hiring white men'

The Royal Air Force reportedly stopped hiring white men this week in order to meeting “impossible” diversity targets. Defence sources quoted on Sky News accused RAF head Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston of appearing willing to compromise the nation’s security.

One claimed “he’s prepared to break the operational requirement of the air force just to meet diversity”.

The source added: “I think he needs to be hauled up by the Ministry of Defence and told: This is the defence agenda, get on it.”

The head of the RAF’s recruiting team has now resigned as a result of the row which has been sparked by the accusations.

The Group Captain’s identity has not been revealed but she is understood to be a woman.

The Ministry of Defence confirmed the Group Captain had stood down from their post but was still serving as an RAF officer.

Former Cabinet Minister Sajid Javid said it would be “complete nonsense” if the RAF had put a pause on hiring white men.

He told Sky News: “I happen to think having more diversity actually increases the productivity of your workforce.

“But it should not be based on race – whether it’s black, white or anything.”

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“The Royal Air Force has a well-earned reputation for operational excellence that is founded on the quality of all our people. We will always seek to recruit the best talent available to us.”

In his first speech as Head of the Armed Forces, Admiral Sir Tony Radakin said in 2021 that diversity was not about “wakefulness”.

He added: “It is about woefulness.

“The woefulness of too few women. The woefulness of not reflecting the ethnic, religious and cognitive diversity of our nation.”

The Chief of the Air Staff has committed himself to doubling the recruitment of women by 2030.

This would bring the total to 40 percent.

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