Brigadier Tom Bewick OBE and Vice-Chairman Cllr Anthony Brewer
The Armed Forces Covenant scheme was launched by the Government in 2011 following a high profile Legion campaign on Armed Forces Covenant issues. The scheme was announced by the Prime Minister as part of a wider Armed Forces Covenant package in May 2011: this followed concerted cross-party campaigning in Parliament and a meeting between the Prime Minister and the Legion’s Director General, Dr Chris Simpkins, at which it was agreed that the principles of the Armed Forces Covenant would be written into law.
- recognising the unique nature of Service,
- ensuring that there is no disadvantage, e.g. in accessing public services, as a result of service in the Armed Forces, and
- allowing special treatment where justified, e.g. in the case of injured personnel enshrined in the Armed Forces Act 2011.
A key test of those principles is the extent to which they are applied in practice on the ground, which is why Armed Forces Covenants are so important. Armed Forces Covenants are voluntary statements of mutual support between civilian communities and their local Armed Forces community. Outlining the mutual obligations between the Nation, the Government and the Armed Forces.
Armed Forces Covenants aim to:
- encourage local communities to support the Armed Forces community in their areas;
- nurture public understanding and awareness of the issues affecting the Armed Forces community;
- recognise and remember the sacrifices made by the Armed Forces community;
- encourage activities which help to integrate the Armed Forces community into local life; and
- encourage the Armed Forces community to help and support the wider community, whether through participation in events and joint projects, or other forms of engagement.
Signing an Armed Forces Covenant not only offers a unique and low-cost way for local authorities to do their bit to honour the Armed Forces Covenant locally; it also offers groups, organisations and individuals within their area access Government funding and the Armed Forces Covenant Grant Scheme.
View: Nottinghamshire Local Authorities' Armed Forces Covenant
Ashfield District Council Armed Forces Champions:
Councillor David Walters: Cllr.D.Walters@ashfield.gov.uk
Assisted by Councillor Andy Gascoyne: Cllr.A.Gascoyne@ashfield.gov.uk
Lead Officer: Gillian Welch: email@example.com
Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) Silver award holders:
- must have signed the Armed Forces Covenant
- must have already stated their intent to be supportive by using the ERS website to register at the Bronze level
- must proactively demonstrate that service personnel/armed forces community are not unfairly disadvantaged as part of their recruiting and selection processes
- must employ at least one individual from the armed forces community category that the nomination emphasises
- must actively ensure that their workforce is aware of their positive policies towards defence people issues
- within the context of Reserves, the employer must have demonstrated support to mobilisations or have a framework in place. They must demonstrate support to training by providing at least 5 days’ additional unpaid/paid leave must not have been the subject of any relevant negative PR or media activity
Click here to read about how Ashfield District Council achieved the Silver Award