NORTH East Lincolnshire Council has reaffirmed it’s unwavering commitment to supporting members of the Armed Forces Community working in it’s ranks.
Earlier this month, the Leader of the Council, Councillor Philip Jackson, and Chief Executive Officer, Rob Walsh, re-signed the Armed Forces Covenant after the authority was awarded the Gold Defence Employer Recognition Award by the Ministry of Defence.
The Armed Forces Covenant is a Government-backed scheme which requires signatories to affirm commitments to ensuring that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly.
Employers signing up to the Armed Forces Covenant are encouraged to offer a variety of packages of support to employees affiliated with the armed forces community.
Reserve Forces and Cadets Association (RFCA) Regional Employer Engagement Director, Pauline King, said:
“The Armed Forces Covenant recently had surpassed 10,000 signatories. In the Yorkshire & Humber region alone we have 700 employers that have committed to supporting the Covenant promise.
“North East Lincolnshire Council was awarded the Gold Defence Employer Recognition Scheme in 2021 for its outstanding support for defence personnel and members of the armed forces community, and now it has reaffirmed that support by re-signing the Armed Forces Covenant.”
The Leader of North East Lincolnshire Council, Councillor Philip Jackson, said:
“The Council first signed the community covenant in 2011, and at the time that brought together many large organisations from across North East Lincolnshire to formalise their commitment to the armed forces community.
“As a local authority, we support the Armed Forces Major Events Team which offers help and advice to members of the armed forces community as well as organising various events throughout the borough.
“Indeed we have received recognition for what we do here, with the Gold Defence Employer Recognition Scheme and committing to the pledges set out in our Armed Forces Covenant. We are very much sighted as a national exemplar.
“Today as NEL is signing the covenant in its own right to ensure that we, as a major employment force, continue to provide one of the best settlement opportunities for armed forces and their families.
“Around 6% of residents in North East Lincolnshire identify as being part of the Armed Forces community and that’s relatively higher than other parts of the country. This includes those serving, our reserve forces and cadet volunteers. They bring a wealth of valuable experience and skills to the workplace and it’s right that they are valued.”
The Council’s Chief Executive , Rob Walsh, added:
“As a major local employer it is right that we reaffirm our support for the Armed Forces Covenant.
“As the son of a veteran, I’m proud to be one of the signatories. There is far more support in place now for those who have served and those still serving, and their families, who are looking to transition to civilian life
“At North East Lincolnshire Council, we have people affiliated with the armed forces working for us, connecting with us, and wanting to live and work here.
“Let’s make sure that we do live up to the principles enshrined in this covenant and that we lead by example.”
To find out more about the Armed Forces Covenant, visit: www.armedforcescovenant.gov.uk.
For more information on the support available to members of the armed forces community in North East Lincolnshire, visit: AFMET – Armed Forces North East Lincolnshire.