South Kesteven District Council receives gold award for work with Forces community
South Kesteven District Council has been awarded a gold award for its work with the Armed Forces community.
The council has received the Armed Forces Covenant Gold Award, which is for employers who commit to key responsibilities on housing and employment of service personnel.
SKDC received its Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award for outstanding support to the Armed Forces community, and it is one of only 18 organisations across the East Midlands to hold this status.
A spokesperson for the council said: "It is an honour for the district council to receive this award.
"South Kesteven has a proud military history and we take our responsibilities towards current and former Armed Forces personnel, and their families, extremely seriously.
"The award recognises our commitment to supporting them in every way that we can.
"A key part of our role is to inspire others to do the same, and we actively encourage businesses and other organisations to sign the Armed Forces Covenant, engage with the Employer Recognition Scheme and support our Armed Forces on all fronts."
To win an award, organisations must provide 10 extra paid days leave for Reservists and have supportive HR policies in place for veterans, Reserves, and Cadet Force Adult Volunteers, as well as spouses and partners of those serving in the armed forces.
Organisations must also advocate the benefits of supporting those within the Armed Forces community by encouraging others to sign the Armed Forces Covenant and engage in the Employer Recognition Scheme.
Bruce Spencer, the Ministry of Defence's regional employer engagement director for the East Midlands added: "We are absolutely thrilled that so many local organisations have been recognised with this Gold Award.
"It has been a difficult couple of years and despite that, they have gone above and beyond to ensure our Armed Forces community is supported.
"They should be very proud of this significant achievement."
The Armed Forces community that SKDC supported includes:
- Those serving in HM Armed Forces or Armed Forces Reserves: the Royal Navy, Royal Marines, Royal Air Force and the Regular Army plus their constituent reserves.
- Ex-service personnel or veterans - those who have served at least one day in HM Armed Forces as a Regular or Reservist, or Merchant Mariners who were part of a legally sanctioned operation, this includes those who did National Service and the Home Guard.
- Their dependants including spouses, civil partners and children, but can, where appropriate, be extended to unmarried partners, parents and other family members.
- The bereaved - the immediate family of service personnel and ex-service personnel who have died, whether or not that death has any connection with service.