Staffordshire Police commits to Armed Forces Covenant
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Staffordshire Police has pledged its commitment to the Armed Forces by signing a national covenant today (Tuesday 2 August).
Chief Constable Chris Noble made the pledge at the force’s headquarters, promising to ensure those who serve or have served in the armed forces and their families, are treated fairly.
The covenant commits to supporting members of the Armed Forces in a number of ways, including:
Bespoke victim support for veterans and members affected by crime
Supporting local charities in diversionary activities for veterans
Delivering focused training for officers and staff around the requirements of Armed Forces colleagues
Ensuring members do not face disadvantages in the provision of public services.
In addition to the covenant, the force is also establishing a dedicated Armed Forces Network, to offer further support for any veterans, reservists or serving family members of those who are employed at Staffordshire Police.
Chief Constable Noble said: “The force has always supported those who serve or who have served in the armed forces and their families.
“But, by signing the pledge, along with other police forces across England and Wales, we are committing to honour the Armed Forces Covenant and support the Armed Forces community.
“I would like to thank those in the force who are members or veterans of the Armed Forces for the invaluable work that they do every day for the communities of Staffordshire.”
Staffordshire Commissioner for Police, Fire & Rescue and Crime, Ben Adams said: “By signing the covenant, Staffordshire Police is showing its commitment to supporting past and present members of the Armed Forces as well as those who are close to them.
“I’d like to thank everyone who has served in the Armed Forces, and especially those within the police family, for the contributions they continue to make in keeping us all safe.”
The pledge aims to support colleagues such as Detective Superintendent Nicki Furlong, whose husband served as a Sergeant in the Royal Air Force, where he was deployed to Afghanistan, the Falkland Islands, Cyprus, Crete and Oman.
Det Supt Furlong said: “Most people miss their other half if they go on holiday for a week, so when it’s months at a time without any communication, it can incredibly difficult to deal with.
“I’m lucky to have such a fantastic relationship with my supervisor and the team who have supported me so well – when my husband was first deployed, they brought some pyjamas with his face printed on them, along with a box of chocolates and a big box of snacks!
“I cried, they gave me a big hug and then I carried on with my duties – because I knew they were all there for me and were so supportive.”
She added: “The signing of the covenant will make more people aware of the pressure families face during deployments.
“It’s important to highlight the bravery of those who put themselves out there to protect our country and the impact that can have on relatives who need that extra support.”
Alongside the covenant, the force has also launched its very own Armed Forces Network.
PC George Cooper, who previously served in Afghanistan and the Mediterranean, launched the network after 18-months of hard work.
The PC joined Staffordshire Police through the Initial Police Learning and Development Programme (IPLDP) in September 2015, using the skills he developed within the armed forces.
He said: “The network will mean that we can bring together veterans, their relatives and families of those serving, to ensure they are supported in a practical way.
“This could be as simple as a chat and a brew with someone with shared experiences through to helping signpost to tailored support from Occupational Health, the NHS, Veterans Charities and more.
“The fact that we are now signed up to the covenant also acknowledges our commitment to armed forces personnel, making Staffordshire Police an attractive future employer for service leavers and their families.”