Organisation to Halt Military Service – 50 year anniversary

As one of the most successful protest campaigns in New Zealand, the Organisation to Halt Military Service (OHMS) was instrumental in the ending of compulsory military training (CMT) in New Zealand.

That all happened 50 years ago and it’s time to reflect and celebrate the events which led to its ending.

CMT meant that all nineteen-year-old males (yes it was just blokes) were required to register for military training, and an annual ballot was held to conscript a number of those young men for three months’ initial full-time military training followed by three weeks’ training annually for the next three years.

That all ended in 1972 following the successful OHMS campaign centred on civil disobedience and refusals by many to register for the annual ballot. The campaign was instrumental in convincing the incoming Kirk Labour Government that it was time for CMT to go – and it did!

To celebrate and record the success of OHMS, it has been decided to hold a number of commemoration activities in late 2022 to coincide with the 50-year anniversary of the repeal of the National Military Service Act, and to produce a documentary film to record the events then and the recollections of those who were involved.

More information or to join and support these activities can be found here.