Uniform to Work Day is a chance to celebrate the contribution that more than 20,000 reservists across the UK make to the armed forces. By wearing their military uniform to their civilian place of work, reservists from the British Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force are highlighting the fact that they are ordinary citizens who go the extra mile for their country.
The Prime Minister, David Cameron, said:
Our reserve forces play a vital role building the modern, integrated, well-trained and well-equipped armed forces we need to meet the challenges of the future. Reserves come from all walks of life and joining the forces offers them the chance to face new challenges and bring new skills and experiences back to their workplaces.
I am proud that so many reservists are taking part in Uniform to Work Day today; it is right that our reserves are able to wear their uniforms with pride and remind people of the huge contribution they make.
I would also like to thank all the employers around the country who rightly make it possible for their staff to be a part of our reserves. I hope that even more people will be inspired today to find out about the fantastic opportunities being a member of the reserves can provide.
Many of the reservists taking part have served on operational tours and have a wealth of skills and experience from civilian life that they bring to their roles in the armed forces.
Craftsman Iain Fitt balances life as a busy school teacher with a career in the Army Reserve. He serves in the Military Stabilisation Support Group, a tri-service organisation made up of regulars and reserves which provides military support to the civilian efforts to stabilise countries around the world which are either emerging from conflict or are at the risk of sliding into chaos.
I joined the British Army Reserve at quite a late point in my life, but as both my great-grandfather and grandfather saw active service I felt that I needed to serve. It has been a decision that has made an immeasurably positive difference to my professional and personal life.
Working with such a highly skilled and diverse range of people that reflect modern British society, and who are unquestioningly supportive of each other, is such an uplifting experience.
The values and standards that we live and work by equip you with a ‘can do, will do’ mentality that gives you the confidence in your ability to attempt pretty much anything. It is a matter of immense pride to me to be the third generation of my family wearing this uniform.
As well as reservists wearing their uniforms to work, employers and businesses can show their support for the armed forces by signing the corporate covenant, a voluntary pledge which demonstrates their concrete support for the armed forces community, which includes employing and supporting reservists.
Security firm G4S is one such company showing their support on Uniform to Work Day by pledging to sign the corporate covenant and recruit 600 reservists.
Uniform to Work Day is part of a week-long series of events building up to Armed Forces Day on Saturday 28 June. More information is available on the Armed Forces Day website.