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In recognition of the achievements made by the West Mercia Remember Veterans project, the Armed Forces Covenant has committed further funding, with support of the PCC John Campion, to continue the valuable work.

The Ministry of Defence’s Covenant has provided £150,000 for two years, with the Commissioner committing additional funding of £50,000 to help continue strengthen the pathways and services for veterans.

With an estimated five to ten percent of the prison population consisting of ex-service personnel, the project, which was initially set up in 2016 with funding from the MOD and support from the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner and charity YSS, aims to help ex-service personnel integrate back into civilian life and prevent them from coming into contact with the criminal justice system.

The first phase has brought together existing support groups, which weren’t previously joined up, and built awareness of the issues and barriers that veterans face. The second phase will focus more on providing practical and emotional support in community settings through specially recruited workers from YSS.

The Commissioner said: “Those who make sacrifices for their country deserve to be supported so they don’t face the difficulties that all too many ex-service personnel face when leaving the military.

“The commitment I made when the project first launched is the same commitment I make today – I will work hard to understand the needs of veterans and make sure that they have access to the relevant support services.”

Lorraine Preece, YSS CEO, said: “We are delighted to be able to continue working with the Police and Crime Commissioner to identify and support veterans in the criminal justice system across West Mercia”.

Issued on: Wednesday 10th April