Reports 2013/38

Living conditions for veterans

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The report on living conditions for veterans is based on a sample survey among personnel from the Norwegian Armed Forces or from the Police, who have served in missions abroad. The report describes some of the most important indicators on living conditions, and compares with reference groups from Statistics Norway’s ordinary surveys on living conditions.

Veterans are mainly men, and most of them are aged 25-66 years. On average, veterans from the Armed Forces have served in 1,6 missions, 64 percent have served in one. Almost seven out of ten have served in Lebanon. On average, veterans from the Police have served in 1,9 missions, 52 percent have served in one. Quite a few have been involved in serious incidents during their service. 52 percent of veterans from the Armed Forces have been in acute danger of loosing their lives, 44 percent have witnessed wounds or death among civilians. 36 and 56 percent of veterans from the Police have experienced the same. Experiences from the service may affect health, and to a certain degree the participation in the labour marked.

I total, participation in the labour marked is high among veterans. Compared to reference groups, specially the employment of female veterans is high. On the whole, veterans are no more absent from work due to sickness than others, and they experience at least the same degree of social support and feedback as employees in the reference groups. Still, our analysis indicates that negative experiences during service may increase the danger of being excluded from the labour marked.

Due to high employment rates, veterans have high incomes compared to reference groups. Difference in incomes between men and women are also smaller among veterans. At-risk-of poverty rates are low, and veterans have a positive view on their household’s economy.

Compared to reference groups, veterans are in just as good physical and mental health. With the exception of less use of general practitioners, veterans use health services to the same degree as others. Still, the service may have affected health. Experiences during service may have negative health effects.

Compared others, veterans are also active in social networks, and they contribute to voluntary work. They also have the same degree of trust in others, but more often report that others show little interest in what they do.

Veterans from the Armed Forces and the Police have a strong position in the housing marked. The share of owners is high, and housing standards are good. Though veterans on average have higher expenses for mortgage than others, their housing cost burden is not higher.

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