NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Army Considers Moving One in Six Jobs to the Private Sector

November 4, 2002

The Army is studying an ambitious plan to contract out nearly 214,000 military and civilian employee positions to the private sector. It would be the largest ever transfer of government jobs to private firms.

The purpose of the move, if implemented, would be to focus more of the military's resources on national defense and anti-terrorism efforts -- and to cut costs.

  • The scope of the transfer would be worldwide and would involve 58,727 military personnel and 154,910 civilian employees who perform such support functions as accounting, legal counsel, maintenance and communications.
  • The Army currently employs about 1.3 million persons -- including 222,000 civilians.
  • The president of the American Federation of Government Employees blasted the plan for turning over jobs to defense contractors and changed that the Army doesn't "give a damn about national security."
  • So far, 20,000 to 40,000 jobs in 26 government agencies have been put up for competition or directly converted to the private sector under Bush administration plans.

The administration's ultimate goal is to put 425,000 jobs government-wide up for private competition.

Source: Christopher Lee, "Army Weighs Privatizing Close to 214,000 Jobs," Washington Post, November 3, 2002.


Browse more articles on Tax and Spending Issues