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Greater Manchester no longer has a Police and Crime Commissioner. The Mayor of Greater Manchester has now taken responsibility for policing and crime.

Armed Forces covenant for Greater Manchester

The flag has been raised above GMP HQ. Pictured with Tony and Sir Peter are former RAF Cadet PC Mark Ollerenshaw, Inspector John Adams who served in the army in the Grenadier Guards and Chief Superintendent Nick Adderley, who served in the Royal Navy. Picture by markwaugh.net

As the country marks Armed Forces Day, Greater Manchester’s Police and Crime Commissioner and Chief Constable have signed a declaration of support for current and former servicemen and women to recognise their sacrifice and have committed to ensure the police service meets their specific needs.

Tony Lloyd and Sir Peter Fahy have also raised the Armed Forces Day flag over GMP headquarters to mark the event, which takes place on 28 June.

Many veterans continue their public service when they leave the Armed Forces, with many former military personnel choosing to serve with Greater Manchester Police as either officers or staff. But some veterans struggle to readjust to civilian life and face a number of problems including drug and alcohol dependence. A small number of them go on to commit criminal offences.

Now Tony Lloyd and Sir Peter Fahy have given a commitment to ensure that those who do enter the criminal justice system will be offered help and support from the point of arrest.

Tony said:

“Thousands of people from Greater Manchester have served their country in the Armed Forces. When called upon, these men and women serve with courage and dedication, often at considerable personal sacrifice.

“When members of our armed services return from duty, they often require additional support Often these are young men and women who have seen things in combat that are unimaginable. We have to make sure that those who unfortunately go on to commit criminal offences get the help they need. This declaration shows that both Sir Peter and I are committed to ensuring they get that help.”Tony Lloyd

Sir Peter added: “GMP has many members of staff who have served proudly in the armed forces and continues to support those called up by the reserve forces. I am proud to sign this declaration to show our commitment to those who have served their country and made great personal sacrifices to do their duty.”

The Greater Manchester declaration is intended to sit alongside the National Armed Forces Covenant, which outlines the moral obligations between the nation, the government and the armed forces, and is seen as a significant statement between the police and local community.

GMP is working towards identifying veterans as part of a standard screening process for all people who are arrested so they can then be referred to the correct support networks once released. These include organisations like the Royal British Legion and Combat Stress.

Training has already been provided to custody staff by veterans’ group and Tony’s office is developing a working partnership with Combat Stress to ensure information about help and support is available in police stations.

Sir Peter and Tony sign the declaration

Sir Peter and Tony sign the declaration. Picture by markwaugh.net

 The Greater Manchester Covenant

Greater Manchester’s Police and Crime Commissioner and Chief Constable recognise the sacrifice that servicemen and women from our region have made in the defence of others. Many paid the ultimate price by giving their lives. Many others have, once they have left the Armed Forces, continued their public service by working for Greater Manchester Police as both police officers and staff.

By signing this declaration we commit to:

  • Recognising the unique place the Armed Forces have in our community by remembering  the sacrifices made by current and former sevicemen and women
  • Recognising the specific needs of some veterans when they return from conflict and ensure that the right support is in place for veterans who come into contact with police
  • Encouraging the police and the armed forces communities to provide each other with support 

The National Armed Forces Covenant 

The first duty of Government is the defence of the realm. Our Armed Forces fulfil that responsibility on behalf of the Government, sacrificing some civilian freedoms, facing danger and, sometimes, suffering serious injury or death as a result of their duty. Families also play a vital role in supporting the operational effectiveness of our Armed Forces. In return, the whole nation has a moral obligation to the members of the Naval Service, the Army and the Royal Air Force, together with their families. They deserve our respect and support, and fair treatment.

Those who serve in the Armed Forces, whether Regular or Reserve, those who have served in the past, and their families, should face no disadvantage compared to other citizens in the provision of public and commercial services. Special consideration is appropriate in some cases, especially for those who have given most such as the injured and the bereaved.

This obligation involves the whole of society: it includes voluntary and charitable bodies, private organisations, and the actions of individuals in supporting the Armed Forces. Recognising those who have performed military duty unites the country and demonstrates the value of their contribution. This has no greater expression than in upholding this Covenant.

For more information about Armed Forces Day, and events in your area, visit www.armedforcesday.org.uk.

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