Air Cadets will no longer be forced to swear a religious oath.
The Air Cadet Organisation will offer future cadets the option of a non-religious pledge. The decision follows a campaign by the British Humanist Association and the United Kingdom Armed Forces Humanist Association (UKAFHA).
Until now the 41,000 Air Cadets aged 13-20 vowed "to be a good citizen and to do my duty to God and the Queen, my country and my flag". The corps risked breaking European legislation and the MoDs policy on equality and diversity by not offering a secular pledge. "By failing to provide a non-religious oath [it] excluded a significant number of young people of good conscience who do not believe in any god and are not willing to lie by saying words they don't believe," said David Brittain, general secretary of UKAFHA.