HM Forces Families


Cases involving HM Forces Families


Family life in the armed forces is by its very nature, different to that in civilian life.  The Forces control the movement of the family and families often endure long periods of separation, without extended family support.  Local authorities and other agencies should note these differences and be ready to share information with the service authorities when a service family becomes subject to child protection inquiries. Each service has its own welfare organisation, and service authorities also provide housing for their families.  Due to the frequency with which the families move, it is important that the Service Authorities are fully aware of any child or young person who is deemed to be at risk of harm within their family.


The Service Authorities will co-operate with statutory agencies and support service families where child abuse or neglect occurs or is suspected.  The information held on families is an important part of the assessment and review of child protection cases.  Procedures exist in all the services overseas to register and monitor the protection of children and young people at risk and the usual rules of confidentiality are observed. 


Royal Navy and Royal Marines


The Area Officer for East and Overseas has an overview of all naval child protection cases in the UK.  Contact Tel: 02392 722712 or Fax: 02392 725083.




Local authorities with enquiries or concerns regarding child protection or the welfare of a child from an Army family should contact: The Army Welfare Service Intake and Assessment Team. Contact Tel: 01904 882053 Email:


Royal Air Force


The Royal Air Force has an independent welfare organisation on each station.  Social work is managed as a normal command function and co-ordinated by each station’s personnel officer. 


Service Families Overseas


For service families based overseas or being considered for an overseas appointment, the responsibility for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of their children is vested with the Ministry of Defence (MOD).  The MOD funds the British Forces Social Work Service (BFSWS)  ( Royal Navy Royal Marines Welfare (RNRMW) for navalservice families) and provides a fully qualified social work and community health service.


For SSAFA-FH referrals please contact - The Director of Social Work on Tel: 020 7403 8783 or Fax: 020 7403 8815.


For RNRMW referrals please contact the Welfare Portal Team on Tel: 02392 728777 or Fax: 02392 725082









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