Calls to make county 'best place for veterans'

HELP with employment and skills support for veterans is one of the key pledges in a drive to make Greater Manchester the best place in the country for current and former members of the Armed Forces to access support.

The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, set out plans to shape the future of support for the county’s serving and ex-serving members of the Armed Forces and their families.

Inaugural Manchester Armed Forces Covenant Summit

Representatives from the Ministry of Defence, all three-Armed Forces, partner agencies and local authorities joined the Mayor at the inaugural and ground-breaking Greater Manchester Armed Forces Covenant Summit, to discuss the plan and input on the proposals.

The event follows £232,000 of funding provided by the Armed Forces Covenant Trust in 2017 to transform Greater Manchester’s offer to the Armed Forces Community under the Armed Forces Covenant Fund.

Next steps for delivering Covenant promises

At the event, the Mayor set out the next steps for delivering Greater Manchester’s promises under the Covenant, including help with housing, employment and skills support, and working together to end veteran rough sleeping by 2020.

In 2014, Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) became the first city-region to sign the Armed Forces Covenant. The commitment of the GMCA and local authorities in Greater Manchester to the Armed Forces Covenant was reaffirmed in June 2017 when it was re-signed.

Speaking at the event, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham, said: “Greater Manchester is determined to do the right thing by those serving and ex-serving members of the Armed Forces.

“This Covenant presents an opportunity to bring knowledge, experience and expertise to bear on the provision of help and advice to members of the Armed Forces Community. It also presents an opportunity to build upon existing good work on other initiatives.

“Today is the beginning of a journey that will see Greater Manchester join together in partnership to go beyond its current level of provision, and set a new standard in the support that is provided to members of the Armed Forces family through devolution.”