Largest Gathering in Support of Armed Forces Covenant in Scotland
Monday, 10 October, Glasgow City played host to the largest Gathering in support of our Armed Forces and Military Veterans Community, including their families, in the UK to date. Veterans Scotland, the organisation behind the orchestration of this event paid tribute to the generosity of the City of Glasgow in providing the City Chambers as the event venue, and how the close partnership forged between the City of Glasgow, Veterans Scotland, The Scottish Government, representatives of all 3 Armed Services in Scotland and the Scottish Veterans Commissioner has led to the success of this ground-breaking event.
Over 200 delegates attended from over 22 Scottish local authorities, 10 NHS Boards, the DWP, Police Scotland, Education Services, local authority housing staff, Housing Associations, the Serving Community and families federations, the Scottish Government, the Ministry of Defence, DWP and Veterans Welfare Services as well as from charities and others with an interest in meeting the commitments of the Armed Forces Covenant in Scotland.
The Gathering brought together decision makers and influencers of policy against the political backdrop of the Armed Forces Covenant 2012 and The Scottish Government’s Renewing Our Commitments 2016.
The keynote address was from Cabinet Secretary Keith Brown, who announced the Standard Life Foundation initiative to support the Scottish Veterans Fund.
Keith Brown, Cabinet Secretary with responsibility for Veterans, said:
“Scotland is a society that holds our armed forces, veterans and their families in high esteem. The Scottish Government places great importance on this community, and we aim for Scotland to be their destination of choice, with supportive communities, high living standards and excellent public services. Armed forces and veterans champions are powerful advocates for their interests, providing vital support within the public sector in Scotland.”
Other speakers included Scottish Veterans Commissioner Eric Fraser, General Officer Scotland Major General Nick Ashmore, Ray Lock of The Forces in Mind Trust and Carolyn McLeod launched the “Getting it Right for Forces Families” video.
Veterans Scotland Chairman Martin Gibson said, “The drawing together of so many key players from a wide spectrum of sectors demonstrates the strong desire across Scotland to make the Armed Forces Covenant a success and will ensure there is no disadvantage to those who serve their country.”
The day’s programme aimed to bring delegates up to date at the strategic level, whilst providing the opportunity to share good practice, learn about research reports, with the opportunity to influence and shape the development of further initiatives in the areas of Employment, Housing, Wellbeing and honouring the Covenant through break- out sessions against the overall backdrop of the Scottish Government’s intention to make Scotland the destination of choice for those leaving the Services.
About Veterans Scotland
Veterans Scotland is a membership charity for the charitable sector working in support of the nation’s personnel and veterans of the armed forces and their families. Veterans Scotland works on behalf of its members to enhance the welfare of the veterans community in Scotland by acting as the prime vehicle for: joint working between member charities; the dissemination of information to members and the coordination of joint approaches to UK; Scottish Government; Local Authorities and other organisations whose business is of benefit to veterans.
Veterans Scotland also provides the one stop shop website www.veterans-assist.org for veterans, to access information and guidance on any topic they may need help with following transition out of the armed services.
Journalists and media are invited to join us at the event in the morning, where selected guest speakers, including Cabinet Secretary Keith Brown, General Officer Scotland Nick Ashmore, Scottish Veterans Commissioner Eric Fraser and Veterans Scotland Chairman Martin Gibson will be available for interview.