Date: Monday August 21, 2017 at 1:30pm
City Council has launched its own advice and support website for personnel
leaving the Armed Forces.
site – www.serviceleaversliverpool.co.uk – has been developed
as part of the council’s responsibility under the Armed Forces Covenant and has
been driven by the local authority’s Making it Happen Group for Armed Forces
Progress achieved by the
city, which includes hosting this year’s Armed Forces Day, has been recognised
nationally as the council has just won the gold award under the Armed Forces
Covenant Employer Recognition Scheme.
Councillor Ian Francis,
Armed Forces Champion for Liverpool, said: “Leaving the Armed Forces is a
daunting time and affects not just the service leavers but also their families.
“We wanted anyone who was
either coming home to Liverpool or choosing to make their new life here to have
one place where they can get that all-important initial information so that
they can get on with their new lives.”
The site contains information
on finding a home, getting a job, and keeping well as well as details of plenty
of other services.
The Making it Happen Group
is a multi-agency forum, co-chaired by Cllr Francis and Bob Blanchard, chair of
Liverpool Veterans’ HQ.
Said Bob: “It’s important
to remember that many service personnel entered the forces straight out of
school and so when they come to leave it will be the first time they have had
to do many of the things we take for granted.
“Finding a job and
accommodation are two of the biggest challenges but even things that we all do
without thinking about it such as paying council tax, registering with a GP and
sorting out a TV licence may be new to service personnel.”
Earlier this year Kev
Archer, 43, left the Army following 22 years of service, latterly working with
the families Army Welfare Service. He is now working as a families officer at
Liverpool Veterans Centre, helping support those who are leaving the forces.
He said: “I was fortunate
in that I gave myself time to prepare for leaving and had a good CV ready and
had also planned out where my family was going to live.
“As well prepared as I
thought I was, I still remember going to the Job Centre and being shocked that
the system was all online. I was expecting rows of jobs boards with vacancies
pinned to them and when I mentioned this I was laughed at by a member of staff
who said I must have been living on another planet.
“Some personnel have to
leave the service due to illness or injury or get discharged and it all happens
very quickly so leaving the forces family can be like a bereavement. It is
really important that they have easy access to advice and support to make sure
they and their families have a stable transition.”
For more information about
Service Leavers Liverpool please email ServiceLeavers@liverpool.gov.uk you can also follow on