Welcome to the AFVBC National News & Announements, this page shows national news which may be of importance to the Armed Forces & Veterans Breakfast Clubs. This page may also show any publications which may help veterans or their families.
Military charities say they are not coping with the increased demand for mental health support. Campaigners estimate that last year, at least 58 veterans took their own lives. The Ministry of Defence spends £22 million pounds a year on mental health for veterans, while the NHS has dedicated around £6m annually since 2016.
An inquest, which is due to begin today, will examine whether there was a lack of support for two soldiers who died in suspected suicides at Ballykinler in County Down. Lance Corporal James Ross and Rifleman Darren Mitchell, who both served in Afghanistan, died within three months of each other in 2012 and 2013. Both were found hanged. Their families claim that they had nobody to turn to with their problems and did not provide a conducive environment for soldiers who might be struggling on their return from operations overseas.
The Bomber Command Memorial in Green Park was splashed in white paint. The clean up of a Royal Air Force memorial in central London is underway after it was among a number vandalised with paint. The Bomber Command Memorial in Green Park was splashed in white paint between 7:45pm and 9pm on Sunday, according to police. The RAF Benevolent Fund said it was the fourth time in six years the monument has been attacked.
All of the Armed Forces have been named by charity Stonewall in the top 100 UK employers for their commitment to lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender staff. The Royal Marines and Royal Navy are in 15th place, the Army is joint 51st and the RAF is in 68th place on the list. That's an improvement from last year when the Royal Navy and Royal Marines were 32nd and the British Army at 84th. The RAF hasn't featured in the list since 2015.
The new study will examine the support available to the different members of military families, including spouses and partners, and children. The report’s findings, which will be completed by summer 2019, will consider the diverse needs of service families and assess whether the current support on offer is meeting these needs. The study will also allow the MOD to further enhance the delivery of vital support for military families.