Veterans Badge extended while local MP welcomes Veterans Day

June 28, 2007 10:17 AM

Following the success of his earlier campaign to promote the availability of the Veterans Badge, Mark Hunter, MP for the Cheadle constituency is now fighting to bring to the attention of local residents the changes in eligibility for the Veterans Badge.

The Veterans Badge can now be applied for by anyone who has served in the UK Armed Forces before December 31st 1994. Residents can also apply if they served in the Home Guard, Polish Forces under UK command, or the Cyprus Regiment during the Second World War, or if they are War Widows and Widowers who receive a War Widows/Widowers Pension (the deceased must have served before 31st December 1994). UK Merchant Seafarers who served during military operations before 1994 can also apply for their own badge.

Yesterday, 27th June, also marked Veterans Day. A chance to celebrate the contribution made by all those who have served in the Armed Forces - as well as those in Merchant Navy and Fishing Fleets who have served in support of operations. It also serves to raise public awareness of Veterans issues

Speaking on Veterans Day, Mark Hunter said: "Despite having been able to help several hundred local residents obtain their Veterans Badge, I continue to be shocked at how poorly and ineffectively the Government has publicised the availability of this badge. Even after raising the issue in Parliament, the Government seems to have done little to make people aware that the badge exist, let alone that more people are now eligible for it.

The Government should be doing more to make veterans aware of the availability of this badge, and I am proud to be raising this issue on Veterans Day, a day of appreciation for all that veterans have done to serve this country with courage and honour.

There are many issues facing service veterans that need to be dealt with by the Government that it is right to draw awareness to on this day. More needs to be done to improve the role that the NHS plays in providing health-care for Veterans. There is no system in place to monitor the priority health-care that the Government has pledged that veterans should have, and often veterans are unaware of this benefit and how to use it. The Government also needs to raise awareness among GPs of the signs of post-traumatic stress disorder so that veterans can be given the treatment they need.

I will continue to do all that I can to press the Government to improve public services for service veterans, they have given so much for this country, and they deserve to have their service recognised and appreciated."

For more information about the Veterans badge, residents are welcome to contact Mr Hunter's office on contact 0161 4861359 or write to:

Mark Hunter MP

Hillson House

Gillbent Road

Cheadle-Hulme

SK8 7LE

What would you like to do next?