Forces in Mind Trust was delighted to be mentioned by Lord Patel of Bradford during his speech on the Armed Forces Covenant as part of the Queen’s Speech Debates on 27 June. You can read his full speech here.

We also welcome the focus of Lord Hay of Ballyore and Baroness Burt of Solihull on this important issue.

Lord Patel of Bradford said: “I particularly welcome the focus on delivering on the Armed Forces covenant across the United Kingdom. I declare an interest having just completed a UK-wide report on veterans’ mental health needs. That report, alongside four detailed reports covering England, ​Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, were all commissioned by the Forces in Mind Trust. In fact the trust has just published an important second report on the community covenant which highlights issues of real concern. For example, there are mixed expectations about what the covenant means, especially in relation to the prioritisation of housing needs, and more worryingly, adult social care has been identified as an area where the covenant is least likely to be reflected in local policies and strategies. I hope that these and other issues will be considered in detail during the passage of the Armed Forces Bill.”

Lord Hay of Ballyore said: “I very much welcome what the gracious Speech says about implementing the Armed Forces covenant throughout the United Kingdom, particularly in Northern Ireland, where there have been problems implementing it. We owe a great debt of gratitude to our Armed Forces—our veterans and those serving today.”

Baroness Burt of Solihull said: “On the Armed Forces Bill, the proposals to make the Armed Forces a more attractive prospect for women, and the recognition that more flexibility in considering family circumstances will make for a more effective workforce, are welcome.”