From supermarkets to football clubs, 1000 UK companies have now signed the Armed Forces Covenant.
Compass Group UK & Ireland, a catering and support services company, will become the landmark 1000th signatory to the Covenant during a ceremony on board HMS Belfast today (4 July).
The Armed Forces Covenant provides support and opportunities for Service personnel and veterans, Reservists and families.
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon attended the signing, along with senior Defence and Compass Group UK & Ireland representatives including Managing Director Dennis Hogan.
Mr Fallon said:
Companies such as Compass Group UK & Ireland are helping to ensure those who serve or have served our country, get the treatment and recognition they deserve. Their support is hugely valued.
In turn, these companies benefit from the skills, experience, professionalism and dedication that that these men and women bring to their organisation.
The Covenant aims to ensure fairness and equal opportunity for Service and ex-Service personnel, Reservists and their families when accessing goods and Services. The 1000th signing shows that the Covenant is helping to build an extensive network of support across a wide range of industry sectors.
Since 2013 the Covenant has helped to deliver these key improvements for the Armed Forces community:
- Fairer mobile phone contracts, freezing the accounts of Armed Forces personnel and their families posted overseas and removing cancellation fees
- Better deals in motor insurance, allowing personnel to keep their no claims bonuses and avoid cancellation fees when posted overseas at short notice
- Employer networks in a wide range of sectors to support Service leavers through their transition to new careers
- Better access to banking, such as savings accounts to Service families posted overseas
- Tackling commercial disadvantage previously experienced by the Armed Forces community in relation to credit rating and access to mortgages on offer. For example, if their Service overseas forces them into a situation where they will need to rent out their home, members are now free from the need to switch to a ‘buy to let’ mortgage.
- Better access to mentoring, work placements and employment opportunities for personnel leaving the Services
- Increased funding and sponsorship of military charities and sports events such as the Invictus Games
- Flexible paid or unpaid leave for mobilised Reservists
- Employment support for Veterans, Reservists, Service spouses and partners, as well as support for Cadets
- Discounts and special deals for individuals and their families
The Armed Forces Covenant delivery partners include businesses and trade bodies, charities and community organisations, local authorities and government departments. Signatories make their own promises to support the Armed Forces community and implement these promises through policies, Services and projects.