Germany wants you in the military, especially if you’re a woman. This week, Chancellor Olaf Scholz’ Cabinet approved a range of steps to improve equal opportunity in the military.
The revisions are intended to harmonize processes in Germany’s armed forces with a recent strengthening of equal opportunity regulations that apply to the entire government. The Bundeswehr requires recruits as part of Germany’s efforts to strengthen its military capabilities in response to Russia’s war in Ukraine.
“Women are still underrepresented in the Bundeswehr,” Steffen Hebestreit, the government spokesperson, told reporters on Wednesday.
According to the government, representation occurs when the percentage of women hits 20%. Officials in the Defense Department want women to make up at least half of the medical corps. The Bundeswehr falls short on both counts: According to government statistics, women make up 9.5% and 45% of the population, respectively.
The Bundeswehr has around 180,000 men in all disciplines, excluding civilian duties assisting the military. Women make up over 24,000 of them. Military records reveal that their share has increased as the entire force has shrunk since the Cold War’s end.
According to Hebestreit, having more women in uniform “makes a contribution” to the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. According to the UN, “empowerment of women and girls” is one of the agenda’s pillars.