The fifth annual Armed Forces Covenant report has been presented to parliament, showing good progress in providing support for the Armed Forces community.
The Covenant is a promise from the nation ensuring that those who serve or have served in the Armed Forces, and their families, are treated fairly. The annual report details the actions taken to deliver covenant commitments in 2016, with over 1300 businesses now signed up to the Covenant.
Amongst the Armed Forces Covenant 2016 achievements:
- A new e-learning programme is helping GPs understand the needs of the Armed Forces community
- NHS England has launched a Veterans Trauma Network
- £22m of Service Pupil Premium payments made to support the pastoral needs of over 73,000 Service pupils in state schools
- 9,000 Forces Personnel have now benefitted from Forces Help to Buy – which has been extended to 2018 • 86% of UK motor insurers are supporting overseas postings by committing to waive cancellation fees
- 4 of the UK’s biggest mobile phone providers have committed to suspend contracts for overseas postings
- A new covenant website is helping the Armed Forces community find out what they can expect from local services and businesses
- Over 150 Covenant Champions in the services are raising awareness of the covenant within their units
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said:
“Our Armed Forces continue to be engaged in numerous operations worldwide, and the world remains a dangerous and increasingly unpredictable place. We have a duty across society, to recognise this dedication and sacrifice, by ensuring that the policies we make, and the services that we provide, treat our Service personnel, Veterans, and their families fairly, and ensure they suffer no disadvantage by comparison to the rest of society.
“Our vision is to ensure that there is a network of practical support, embedded right across central and local Government, businesses, charities, and society as a whole, to meet the unique needs of the Armed Forces community. I have again arranged for a summary version of this report, which will capture its key aspects, to be sent to every serving member of the Armed Forces.
“We will continue to strive for fair treatment, and we pledge to ensure that through the Armed Forces Covenant, we continue to do our utmost for our people.”