Boris Johnson Creates Office for Veterans' Affairs

29 July 2019, 12:40

Veterans at the Royal British Legion's Service of Remembrance
Veterans at the Royal British Legion's Service of Remembrance. Picture: PA

The Prime Minister has announced a new office will be set up to help address challenges facing ex-military personnel and says "veterans have given so much to the UK".

Boris Johnson's newly created Office for Veterans' Affairs will provide greater lifelong support for military personnel.

The Prime Minister pledges that it will ensure " they get the medical treatment they require, to further training and skills after they have transitioned from service to keep them in good jobs, to targeted interventions to prevent the scourge of veteran homelessness".

Boris Johnson also said it's a "stain on our national conscience" that some veterans feel abandoned by their country.

MP and former soldier Johnny Mercer will be the Minister for Defence People and Veterans.

In a statement Mr Mercer said:

"For the first time in its history, the UK Government will have an Office for Veterans’ Affairs to pull together all functions of government to ensure that when our Armed Forces personnel leave service, they are looked after in the manner that they deserve."

"I am delighted with this role, and am resolutely determined to reset this country’s relationship with her veterans. I entered parliament to do precisely this; I am grateful for the opportunity this Prime Minister has given me to do this, and I look forward to getting on with the task at hand."

He will be working alongside MP Oliver Dowden who has also been chosen as the Minister to represent veterans in Cabinet.

Johnny Mercer becomes minister for defence people and veterans
Johnny Mercer becomes minister for defence people and veterans. Picture: PA

The Office for Veterans' Affairs will be staffed by officials from the Cabinet Office and Ministry of Defence.

They will drive policy on veterans’ welfare, mental and physical health, education and employment.