The survey is a joint initiative of Defence and Defence Families of Australia and aims to provide insight into the impact of ADF conditions of service on family members’ satisfaction with service life. It also measures family members’ satisfaction with family support services so that Defence can identify areas for targeted improvement.
In 2019, 3652 members of ADF families completed the survey. The findings show that of those who participated, the most important considerations for Defence families were housing quality and location, the employment of the civilian partner, and financial stability. For families with dependent children, education was the most important consideration.
Other key findings:
Of those who responded, 65 per cent were civilian partners, while the remaining were dual ADF couples, single parent ADF members or ADF members with recognised dependants other than partners or children. Around 75 per cent of those were parents of ADF members and six per cent were other family members.
Around 72 per cent of civilian partners of ADF members who participated report that they are employed—a slight increase on 2017 results, with 58 per cent of partners reporting that it was difficult to re-establish their own employment following relocation.
Between 2015 and 2019, 78 per cent of respondents relocated at least once. Feedback showed that they found it relatively easy to re-establish such things as medical and dental services, but had more difficulty with specific services such as special needs support and childcare.
Around 34 per cent of partners were members with dependants (unaccompanied) or MWD(U) at some stage between 2015 and 2019. Respondents noted that maintaining stability in children’s schooling and their ability to retain friends and activities were positive outcomes.
Defence will use the results to review support programs and services to ensure they meet the needs of ADF members and their families.
Download: 2019 ADF Families Survey infographic
Download: 2019 ADF Families Survey Report
The 2017 ADF Families Survey focused on families and postings, partner employment and under-employment, pride and belonging, and childcare access.
Download: 2017 ADF Families Survey infographic
Download: 2017 ADF Families Survey Report
The 2015 ADF Families Survey focused on absences and relocations.