Supporting those who have served their country
Thornbury & Yate MP Luke Hall writes for the Voice
IN January the Government unveiled its new Veterans Strategy, setting how we will support our amazing armed forces men and women, who have given so much to our country.
Both at home and overseas, whether in supporting our world-leading vaccine rollout, or showing the amazing courage and dedication in bringing British people home from Afghanistan, we owe them enormously. They are some of our nation’s true heroes.
Whilst many former Armed Forces personnel are able to transition back into civilian life, in too many cases this isn’t always easy. So, we have a duty to do even more to support those who veterans who need it most.
The Government has announced a £70 million action plan to help former armed services personnel to apply their military skills to public service roles, and to provide mental health support to those in need.
A “step into health” scheme has been introduced, which will see work done to encourage veterans to apply for healthcare roles across the Home Office, the Department for Work and Pensions and NHS England.
We will also see the Great Place to Work for Veterans scheme put into force, which will guarantee that any veteran applying to any Civil Service role will be guaranteed an interview.
As we know, for so many people, getting into work is the best way of finding a place in society. However, for many veterans it is not that easy. Returning to civilian life presents its own challenges for people suffering with fragile mental health, and it is right that the Government does more.
The Veterans Strategy will see NHS England bring three separate mental health services together within the ‘Op Courage’ mental health service for veterans, which was launched by NHS England last year. This will be vital in helping those in need to support to access it.
The UK Armed Forces' men and women who bravely serve our country are amongst the best and most courageous anywhere in the world.
It is only right that we return that commitment, by making Britain the greatest place in the world to be a veteran.