East Lothian Council is to receive a top award from the Ministry of Defence for its outstanding support for the Armed Forces.

We are delighted to have received a Silver Employer Recognition Scheme Award... it acknowledges the work that we and our partners have undertaken in this area.

The prestigious Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) Silver Award is the second-highest badge of honour available to organisations that employ and support Reservists, service leavers, Veterans and their families.

Each Silver Award winner has signed the Armed Forces Covenant, a commitment to supporting Defence through services, policy and projects. The award also demonstrates that, as an employer, the council has gone above and beyond through engaging with initiatives such as employing veterans, supporting individuals transitioning out of the Armed Forces into a new career and providing flexibility for Reservists.

East Lothian Council has proactively raised awareness of the service community needs by working with its health, education, housing and voluntary sector partners. It has updated its Reservist policy, recognised service in its housing allocations policy and developed new housing for Veterans in the town of Cockenzie.

East Lothian Council’s Armed Forces Champion, Councillor Jim Goodfellow, said: “We are delighted to have received a Silver Employer Recognition Scheme Award. This is the second-highest award given by the Ministry of Defence to employers who go above and beyond to support the armed services community and it acknowledges the work that we and our partners have undertaken in this area.”

The award winners will be recognised for their support to the Armed Forces at an event on 14 November 2019 in the Great Hall of Edinburgh Castle.

Commenting on the announcement of the 2019 Employer Recognition Scheme Silver awards, Defence Secretary, Ben Wallace said: “These awards recognise the outstanding support for our Armed Forces from employers across Britain and I would like to thank and congratulate each and every one.

“Regardless of size, location or sector, employing ex-forces personnel is good for business and this year we have doubled the number of awards in recognition of the fantastic support they give.”
Minister for Defence People and Veterans Johnny Mercer said: “Veterans make a huge contribution to businesses across the country and it’s fantastic to see a record breaking number of organisations recognised for their support.

“We’re working closely with businesses to help them further understand the huge value that veterans, reservists and military spouses can bring to their organisation.

Colin Vooght, Head of Engagement at Lowland Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association (RFCA), the organisation which manages relationships between employers and defence in Scotland, said: “I would like to congratulate the wide variety of different organisations who received a Silver Award this year. This proves companies and institutions of all sizes and sectors can play their part in supporting the Armed Forces community in Scotland.

“I am delighted that these employers have been recognised with one of the Ministry of Defence’s highest awards and look forward to continuing to work alongside each of the award winners in the future.”

Published: Wednesday, 2nd October 2019