Support for Armed Forces Veterans in Wales - Welsh Affairs Committee Contents

7  Conclusion

100.  On the whole, we have been encouraged by the current support available to Armed Forces veterans in Wales, and our recommendations in this Report are aimed at making targeted improvements to the existing system.

101.  The most striking theme to emerge from our inquiry is that a great deal of support is available for veterans in Wales—but often a lack of awareness means that support is not taken up. GPs and others in the medical community are often unaware that veterans are entitled to priority NHS treatment. Local authorities may be unaware that they can give preference to Armed Forces veterans on social housing lists. And, most importantly, veterans themselves sometimes do not know about available support and services. The MoD must do better in explaining the support available for service personnel as part of its resettlement programme. We make specific recommendations in this area.

102.  It can be difficult to reach and inform Armed Forces veterans once they return to civilian life, especially those who left the Service many years ago. We believe the best solution to this problem is a network of 'one-stop shops' for veterans in Wales.

103.  There are reasons to be optimistic. The Armed Forces Covenant provides a useful framework for the MoD and the devolved administrations and will hopefully ensure the needs of veterans are not neglected in future. We are optimistic that the high profile given to this issue over the past decade will be maintained in future. It is the very least our brave Armed Forces personnel deserve.

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Prepared 12 February 2013