BLACKPOOL Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has received a special award for its support to Defence and the wider Armed Forces community.
The Trust is one of 16 organisations from across the North West to receive a Silver Award under the Ministry of Defence Employer Recognition Scheme for its support to services personnel such as reservists, cadets and volunteers.
The Employer Recognition Scheme was launched to reward employers who support this with a services background and encourage others to do the same.
This includes employing serving and former members of the Armed Forces community and demonstrating flexibility towards training and mobilisation commitments for Reservists and Cadet Force Adult Volunteers.
The Trust realises the importance of supporting their staff who serve in the Armed Forces and gives them two weeks paid leave per annum for training purposes. When returning from active duty they are reinstated with no loss of position or status.
Wendy Swift, Chief Executive at the Trust, said: “We are proud of the work in the Trust to ensure that members of the Armed Forces community are supported.
“Our HR policy allows flexibility for both Reservists and Cadet Force Adult Volunteers for training requirements and deployment, and we work with the Career Transition Partnership to support the employment of service leavers.
“We have also signed the Step into Health pledge, providing service leavers with opportunities to gain work experience and employment. We recognise and value the skills and experience service leavers and serving Reservists bring to the workplace, and have established an excellent working relationship with local Army Reserve medical unit 208 (Liverpool) Field Hospital.
“On behalf of the Trust, I’m delighted that our ongoing work has been recognised by Defence with the award of Silver.”
Minister for Defence Personnel and Veterans, the Rt Hon Tobias Ellwood MP, said: “I am delighted to congratulate the recipients of this year’s Employer Recognition Scheme Silver Awards.
“A Silver Award recognises the fantastic efforts of employers throughout the UK who have both elevated their commitments under the Armed Forces Covenant and provided actual benefit to the Armed Forces Community.
“The winners should all be proud of the life-changing impact and fresh opportunities they are providing to our Reservists, veterans, wounded injured and sick and their families. We’ve seen a record number of winners this year, which shows that the Armed Forces family talent pool is also providing tangible business benefit.”
The Trust supports Armed Forces in a number of ways.
A representative from Army Reserve medical unit 208 (Liverpool) Field Hospital has an information stand at the Trust’s Induction days to promote the Reserve Forces and 208 Field Hospital take part in the Trust’s Armed Forces week activities, along with the Royal British Legion, to promote the work and support they give.
The Trust’s current Reservists and former-service personnel are starting an Armed Forces Network group which is due commence later this year The award winners will be presented with certificates signed by the Secretary of State for Defence and the Chief of the Defence Staff during a ceremony in November.