Posted: 31.07.20 at 11:27 by The Editor
Rutland County Council has received the highest possible Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) award for its work to support the Armed Forces Community.
The national ERS encourages employers to support defence and encourage others to do the same. The scheme hands out bronze, silver and gold awards to employers that pledge, demonstrate or advocate support to defence and the armed forces community, and align their values with the Armed Forces Covenant.
Rutland County Council works closely with army regiments based at St George’s Barracks in North Luffenham and Kendrew Barracks in Cottesmore – providing support and ensuring serving soldiers and their families are able to access the local services they need. The Council also works with veterans of all ages and from all branches of the Armed Forces, who make up around 14 per cent of Rutland’s total population.
As part of the latest round of ERS accolades, Rutland County Council has received a Gold Award for having signed the Armed Forces Covenant, ensuring members of the forces community are not disadvantaged in recruiting and selection processes, employing Reservists and promoting positive policies towards defence people issues.
The ERS recognises private companies along with public sector organisations like the emergency services, local authorities and NHS trusts. Rutland is among a record 17 such organisations in the East Midlands to have achieved a Ministry of Defence ERS Gold award this year, for actively demonstrating its support and advocacy for the Armed Forces Community.
Johnny Mercer MP, Minister for Defence People and Veterans, said: “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.”
Coun Ian Razzell, a Rutland County Council Armed Forces Champion and former Army Officer, said: “It’s been almost 10 years since Rutland signed the national Armed Forces Covenant.
"To have achieved the highest possible award through the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme is testament to the tremendous work that has taken place since then to give recognition and support to our local Armed Forces Community.
"There is a huge amount of respect, appreciation and admiration for the Armed Forces in Rutland. I could not be more proud of this accolade and what it stands for.”
To find out more about the support for Armed Forces families and personnel in Rutland, visit: www.rutland.gov.uk/armedforces.