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To bring back national service?

(112 Posts)
Joogle Wed 10-Aug-11 10:00:28

I don't mean in the military sense, more something along the lines of community work. I know in Norway they have compulsory national servicewhich does involve military service but the option of non-militray service as well.

I just feel with the recent riots something needs to be done to stop a bored generation within a doom and gloom era feeling alienated from the rest of the population and that working within their local community therefore feeling more part of it and giving them a wider sense of social responsibility could be the answer, AIBU?

Birdsgottafly Wed 10-Aug-11 10:09:01

Why fnot irst find out who has done the most damage;
Then find out if bordom, gloom and doom has anything to do with it:
Then lets see what part alienation played.

That will save us spending money, thinking that we know the answers, when we don't, yet.
Some of the communities involved have problems which cannot be so easily solved.

Do you honestly think that when this is over the rival gangs will not exsist; just like that, poof, gone. These communities have been begging for help for years.

Hers a novel idea, lets find out the facts. Then work thorough solving the problems. Invest in services needed. Consult with community leaders about what they need. Fair and enough policing to follow on, backed up by a well invested justice system, including rehab services, you never know, its never been done (in this area but has worked in others), it might just work.

You are not going to so easily instil wider social responsibility into the youth when there hasn't been ant responsibility shown in terms of employment, failing schools and housing etc.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Wed 10-Aug-11 10:11:48

YY to National Service, not just for boys though, girls too.

Joogle Wed 10-Aug-11 10:13:28

Millions have been poured into local areas where i live and they have made a difference in a lot of ways, but I do feel throwing money at the situation still doesn't solve the problem of a lot of young people having no real sense of social responsibility and pride in themselves

Joogle Wed 10-Aug-11 10:14:49

Yes absolutely for girls as well as boys. I think it would give youn adults more of an understanding of social problems and how they can help.

squeakytoy Wed 10-Aug-11 10:14:52

If it was used as a way to gain some sort of qualification or trade then yes, it could work.

In some countries, national service is compulsory for anyone who leaves school, and the rank/length of time to be done, depends on what qualification have been achieved at school.

I personally think this is a good incentive to study, and for a child who is not academically talented, it gives them a chance to prove themselves in a practical way by learning a trade.

MardyBra Wed 10-Aug-11 10:15:18

Is this MN or the Daily Mail?

Joogle Wed 10-Aug-11 10:16:43

MardyBra - you think it would be a bad idea to get young adults involved in their communities?

usualsuspect Wed 10-Aug-11 10:17:51


would that be national service just for the poor ?

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Wed 10-Aug-11 10:17:57

My cousins both did national service for two years before going on with their career choices. There still are apprenticeships in other countries, just not the UK. Agree with Squeaky that it would be a very good think for trade-learning to be tied in with national service.

chasingthedevils Wed 10-Aug-11 10:18:45

It is not possible financially to bring back national service.

More realistic to bring back jobs for young people.

sassyTHEFIRST Wed 10-Aug-11 10:18:48

Girls too? Right. Watch the teen pg rate ROCKET

FreudianSlipper Wed 10-Aug-11 10:18:56


at what age 16. the problems start long before what good will ns do we need to understand the problems not just try to fix them with forced discipline

it theory it looks to be a nice idea but our lives have moved on, times have changed it jsut would not work now

MardyBra Wed 10-Aug-11 10:19:00

Seriously though, I think it's an imposition on individual liberties. Once a kid is an adult, then they shouldn't have to be drafted into some sort of community service. They may have other plans for their life.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Wed 10-Aug-11 10:19:19

usualsuspect... Why would it be just for the poor? Everybody did it, except for girls.

Morloth Wed 10-Aug-11 10:19:51

I am actually OK with NS for a year or two, for both sexes and they are absolutely not to see any combat at all.

A large body of able young men and women would be very useful around the place, would be happy to do it retrospectively as well.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Wed 10-Aug-11 10:20:14

16/17 was the national servie age, I believe.

fuckityfuckfuckfuck Wed 10-Aug-11 10:20:26

I think it's compulsory in Germany still. At university I had a German friend hwo had opted out of the military style service and had to do community service instead. He ended up working in an old peoples home for a year, if not two, and he said it taught him a lot. But then every country has its bad seeds, so I don't know the solution.

Joogle Wed 10-Aug-11 10:20:37

usualsuspect - why would it just be for the poor? Don't you think people from wealthier areas could learn just as much through community work? If they are going to be the ones who are going to uni and end up in the top jobs even more reason they should spend a year working within communities at grass root level

usualsuspect Wed 10-Aug-11 10:21:18

Young people need jobs and proper apprenticeships,not enforced stints in the services

grubbalo Wed 10-Aug-11 10:21:29

Don't you think the sort of young adults who people would actually want to do the sort of volunteering you mention already do it? Plenty of "nice" kids already do things like Duke of Edinburgh etc and are involved with lots of charity work. I am sure the thought of having some of these idiots we have seen on TV recently going and "helping" charities (or the army etc) would be the last thing those charities need.

So whilst I completely agree that it is a good idea for young adults to get involved in community projects, I also think that we need to be realistic that if they haven't attended school, college etc over the last few years, where "systems" are in place to try to make them attend, they are hardly likely to turn up eager eyed and bushy tailed to do their "service" for either a charity or the forces. Now what to do with them is a totally different question... and one I'm glad I don't have to try and deal with.

OnEdge Wed 10-Aug-11 10:22:04

Yes Yes !!!

They would be removed from their current environment - gangs would be split up.
Taught life skills
Earn money - pay tax
Be placed into an environment with good role models.

MardyBra Wed 10-Aug-11 10:22:43

Joogle. Nothing wrong with getting involved with the community but I can't see how it would be possible to motivate some sectors of society with a bit of compulsory litter removal or flower planting. Can you imagine trying to organise a group of young people who would rather not be there on a project?

fuckityfuckfuckfuck Wed 10-Aug-11 10:22:48

Yes, and I should say that this friend was by no means poor, his dad was CEO of a massive company and there was obviously plenty of money. But there is still plenty of racial tension in Germany. The town I visited had pretty much a ghetto at one end full of Turkish immigrants. The locals treated them appaulingly

usualsuspect Wed 10-Aug-11 10:22:56

can you imagine the outrage if the teenagers from wealthier areas had to do national service

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