16 Jan 16:00 by Alejandro Rodriguez Garcia


The Prime Minister and Defence Secretary have presented awards to businesses that have made ‘an outstanding commitment to support the Armed Forces’.

The awards ceremony took place at No. 10 Downing Street and recognised those employers who were outstanding at providing support, including jobs for ex-military. Winners received gold awards as part of the Armed Forces Covenant Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS), which was launched in 2014.

The Armed Forces Covenant itself sets out the relationship between the armed forces, the country and the government. Its two core principles are that:

  • The armed forces community should not face 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.

Nearly 800 businesses have signed up to show their support to the Covenant and while there are no firm or legal obligations placed on those that do so, signatories pledge to implement policies that encourage the employment of former service personnel.

The ERS gold awards focussed on commitments to employ reservists, veterans, and Forces family members. Companies to receive the award included Atkins, The Automobile Association, Babcock, Fujitsu, Gateshead Council, Deloitte, Jaguar Land Rover, Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, ISS UK, J.P. Morgan, M-EC Consulting Development Engineers, National Express, PwC, SERCO and Tesco.

Defence Secretary Michael Fallon MP, said: “The support from these organisations is making a real difference to our Armed Forces community. They are ensuring that the men and women who have done and continue to do so much for our nation are treated fairly. Whether allowing reservists the time to train, providing jobs or supporting veterans and spouses, these companies embody what the Armed Forces Covenant is about. I am delighted to thank them for their unwavering support.”