Liverpool Armed Forces Forum consultation event

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND. Military Planners assigned to Merseyside Resilience Forum at the Cunard Building on 7 April 2020. Picture: Jennifer Bruce/Liverpool City Council.

LIVERPOOL’s new Armed Forces Forum will be holding its second meeting next month – and wants to hear what organisations think about proposed legislation.

The forum had its first meeting in January, and is a platform for organisations that offer services to people who have left the Armed Forces and their families as well as those who are still serving.

The forum’s second meeting has now been set for Tuesday 1 September, from 1.30pm-3pm and will take place online, via Zoom.

The focus of the session will be to consult on new duties that are being placed on local authorities and other public bodies. These bodies will be asked to take the Armed Forces Covenant into consideration when making day-to-day decisions including healthcare, education and housing to make sure that people serving and those who have served and their families are not disadvantaged.

Organisations that were unable to take part in the January meeting are invited to get involved in September’s session and can book on to the session via Eventbrite – www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/liverpool-armed-forces-forum-tickets-117525011473 . Please note, the session is not open to members of the public.

At September’s event attendees will also be able to hear how the Armed Forces supported Liverpool City Council’s response to the pandemic as well as from recent Armed Forces Covenant Employer Recognition Scheme gold award recipients Veterans HQ on how the pandemic has affected service families in Liverpool.

Liverpool City Council leads a long-established strategic group for Armed Forces Communities however the forum was set up to capture the variety of services and support available to the Armed Forces community in the city.

Liverpool City Council currently holds the Armed Forces Covenant gold award of the Employer Recognition Scheme and also hosts the website Service Leavers Liverpool – www.serviceleaversliverpool.co.uk

Cllr Roy Gladden, Liverpool’s Armed Forces champion, said: “We’ve always prided ourselves in Liverpool of supporting our Armed Forces community but we always welcome ideas on how we can do even better.

“This event is a great opportunity for the council to hear from other organisations how we can really embed the Armed Forces Covenant into our day-to-day work and address any disadvantages the Armed Forces community may feel that they face.

“This is also a real chance to shape legislation that will support people who have served their country and their families. I would urge any organisation that was unable to attend our first meeting in January to get involved on 1 September – we really want to hear what you think.”

Bob Blanchard, CEO and senior case worker, Veterans HQ, said: “We know from service requests that we have received at Veterans HQ over the past months that Covid has affected veterans and their families as much as if not more so than most.

“We’re looking forward to sharing what we’ve been learning with other organisations and also letting them know how we can support them and the people they work with.

“Partnership is very strong in the city and we want as many organisations as possible to get involved and to share their expertise and knowledge.”