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Army January 31, 2013
Cpl Max Bree
EXTRA Army women are set to
hit Defence Recruiting Centres
from this month as part of the
CA's plan to increase the number
of female soldiers.
The 10 women have been post-
ed into newly created recruiting
positions in Sydney, Melbourne,
Canberra, Brisbane, Adelaide and
Perth to help increase the focus on
Cpl Karen Cahill, previous-
ly from 1 Avn Regt and posted to
Brisbane, said extra women at
recruiting centres would enhance
interaction with potential female
"A lot of younger women have
female specific questions," Cpl
"Sometimes they find we're a bit
more approachable, so they'll want
to ask us. A lot of people when they
think of soldiers they think of male
With all jobs opening to women
and flexible work arrangements
being promoted, CA Lt-Gen David
Morrison said it was important to get
the message out to potential recruits.
"What we need to do is make
certain that these women who
are thinking of joining the Army
have these incentives and options
explained to them," he said.
"I think that it's better that's
done by other women who have got
considerable experience in their own
Lt-Gen Morrison is looking to
increase the number of women in the
Regular Army from 10 per cent to 12
per cent by the end of his tenure in
"Twelve per cent, that's 600 extra
women in the Army," he said.
"We've not only got to recruit
those women we've got to retain
those who are currently serving."
Although 12 per cent was the
first goal, the CA couldn't say what
the percentage of women in the
Army should eventually be.
"I'm absolutely certain that a
better gender balanced workforce is
a more capable workforce."
Capt Petrina Baldwin joined the
Army in 1999 as a signaller. Seven
years later she attended RMC before
becoming a RAEME officer.
She said her new posting at
the Defence Recruiting Centre in
Parramatta would help recruit more
women and dispense with some of
the myths about female soldiers.
"I think it's good I can be a part
of something that's going to have
a significant, positive effect on the
Army, both as an organisation and in
terms of capability," she said.
"And I love the Army so that's
even more reason to have a role in
Four captains, two sergeants and
four corporals will be posted into
the recruiting positions for the next
Offering an insider's view
Female soldiers to be posted to recruiting hotspots to help attract more women
Gender balance: RSM-A WO Dave Ashley chats with Cpls Karen Cahill, Sharon Matheson and Megan Polatos, who
have been posted into new recruiting positions to help attract more women to the Army.
Photo by Lauren Black
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