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Seven north-west employers receive Gold Award for Armed Forces community

Seven north-west employers receive Gold Award for Armed Forces community


24 Aug, 2020

The most supportive organisations for Britain’s Armed Forces from both the private and public sectors were recently announced …

The Ministry of Defence Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Awards continue to grow in strength year on year. To win an award, organisations must demonstrate that they provide 10 extra paid days leave for Reservists and have supportive HR policies in place for Veterans, Reservists, Cadet Force Adult Volunteers and Spouses and Partners of those serving in the Armed Forces. They also advocate the benefits of supporting those within the Armed Forces community, encouraging others to sign the Armed Forces Covenant and engage in the Employer Recognition Scheme.

This year marks the seventh year of the awards scheme, with 47% of winners either micro organisations or SMEs, and 38% public organisations. This demonstrates both the growth in numbers and the depth of supportive employers who cover a wide range of sectors and company sizes. This year’s 127 award winners join a group of 226 winners from previous years, bringing the total to 353 organisations that can share their knowledge and experience on the benefits of employing those from the Armed Forces community. 

This year the following employers from across the north-west of England have received Gold Awards:

  • Cumbria County Council
  • Essar Oil (revalidation)
  • Forward Assist Recruitment
  • Greater Manchester Police
  • Lancashire County Council
  • Veterans HQ Liverpool
  • Wigan Council.

Says Johnny Mercer, Minister for Defence People and Veterans, ‘The breadth and diversity of the winners this year shows how business support for the Armed Forces continues to grow no matter the sector, company size or location. I am grateful for the positive attitude and flexible policies these organisations have adapted towards the defence community, which is testament to the fantastic contribution our serving personnel, veterans and their families can make to any organisation. I am delighted that so many companies are supporting our people and that, through this scheme, we can give them the public recognition they deserve.’

Chris Ashworth, Regional Employer Engagement Director at the North West of England and the Isle of Man Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association (NW RFCA), adds: ‘On behalf of the Ministry of Defence we are delighted to be able to recognise the support and commitment given to the Armed Forces Covenant by employers in the region, through the Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Awards. Each recipient has demonstrated the highest level of support to the Armed Forces community and we thank them for their enthusiasm and commitment.’

About the Armed Forces Covenant 

The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise by the nation ensuring that those who serve or who have served in the Armed Forces, and their families, are treated fairly. More information about the Armed Forces Covenant and how to get involved can be found here 

Through their Armed Forces Covenant pledges, employers have demonstrated concrete support for the Armed Forces family. Key initiatives include:

  • an agreement with mortgage lenders allowing personnel posted abroad to rent out their homes without facing higher mortgage costs or having to change their mortgage
  • fairer mobile and broadband phone contracts, freezing the accounts of Armed Forces personnel and their families posted overseas and removing cancellation fees
  • better deals for motor insurance, allowing personnel to keep their no-claims bonuses and avoid cancellation fees when posted overseas at short notice
  • employer networks in a wide range of sectors to support Service leavers through their transition to new careers
  • a review of the Covenant in Business commissioned by the Forces in Mind Trust, which has been implemented to highlight and promote best practice and identify areas for further improvement. 

More information about the companies involved can be found here 

About the Employer Recognition Scheme 

The Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) was launched in 2014 by then Prime Minister David Cameron to recognise employer support for the wider principles of the Defence Armed Forces Covenant and the full spectrum of defence personnel. This includes Reservists, Service leavers, the wounded, injured and sick, cadets, and spouses.

For a full list of Employer Recognition Scheme Gold, Silver and Bronze Award winners, click here

The North West of England and the Isle of Man Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association (NW RFCA)

The Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association for the North West of England and Isle of Man (NW RFCA) is the organisation that facilitates, supports and promotes the Reserve Forces of all three Armed Services and the three Cadet organisations in the region.

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