Golden seal of approval for Northumbria’s Armed Forces support
Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s ‘outstanding’ support for the Armed Forces community has been given the golden seal of approval.
The trust is one of 100 employers which have been recognised by Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace MP and awarded an Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award.
The Ministry of Defence’s Employer Recognition Scheme represents the highest badge of honour available to those that employ and support those who serve, veterans, and their families.
Northumbria Healthcare was one of the original four pilot trusts – and first in the north east – for the Step into Health programme which provides a dedicated pathway for the Armed Forces community to access career opportunities in the NHS. As a result, the trust has recruited nine service leavers and actively supports veterans’ families and spouses to gain employment.
In addition, it also provides flexibility for reservists working for the trust and mentors other organisation to promote and support employing veterans.
Sir James Mackey, chief executive of Northumbria Healthcare, said: “I am delighted that we have been awarded an Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award which is testament to many years’ hard work to make this programme the success it has become.
“As a trust, we are committed to opening up opportunities for ex-servicemen and women to join us in diverse roles across Northumberland and North Tyneside and do all we can to make their transition to civilian life as smooth as possible.
“Veterans have a great deal to offer the NHS and we will continue our efforts to support them to flourish, and hope to welcome many more to the Northumbria family.”
Gary McLafferty, defence’s director engagement within the North of England Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association, said the award pays tribute to the trust’s ‘outstanding long-term commitment towards the Armed Forces community’.
He said: “Northumbria Healthcare is recognised for having gone that extra mile, turning their written pledge of support through the Armed Forces Covenant, into concrete action and making a positive difference to our people during and after their time in uniform.
“The trust realises the massive contribution our serving personnel, regular or reserve, veterans, cadets, cadet adult volunteers and all their families make to the nation and to civilian employers, and for that I warmly congratulate them and thank them for their support.”
Defence Secretary Mr Wallace said: “These awards recognise the outstanding support for our armed forces from employers across Britain and I would like to thank and congratulate each and every one.
“Regardless of size, location or sector, employing ex-forces personnel is good for business and this year we have doubled the number of awards in recognition of the fantastic support they give.”
Northumbria Healthcare will be presented with its award on 12 November 2019 at the National Army Museum in London.
Jaclyn Curry – Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
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