Never forget: Ministers accused of shirking their commitment to today's heroes

Mail Online | 11/12/2018 | Ian Drury Home Affairs Editor For The Daily Mail
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It was the moment we paid tribute to those lost a century ago.

But last night generals and MPs warned that today’s veterans are still being shamefully neglected.

Centenary - End - First - World - War

As the centenary of the end of the First World War was marked at emotional events around the globe, ministers were accused of shirking their duty of care under the Armed Forces ‘covenant’.

Service personnel and veterans have the legal right to priority NHS care, decent homes and a good education for their children.

Research - Civilians - Terms - Health - Housing

Yet new research suggests that they fare worse than civilians in terms of both health and housing.

Around 50,000 veterans have mental health issues, often sparked by combat stress. Another 6,000 are homeless and 10,000 are in prison or on probation.

Veterans - Ordeal - Investigations - Tours - Duty

Some veterans face the further ordeal of investigations over their tours of duty in Northern Ireland decades ago.

Others who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan have been hounded by ambulance-chasing lawyers.

Lord - Dannatt - Head - Army - Britain

Lord Dannatt, who was head of the Army from 2006 to 2009, said: ‘Is the Britain of 2018 a fit country for heroes, for our wounded service personnel or grieving families?

Johnny Mercer, a Tory MP who saw action in Afghanistan, said improvements had been made in looking after veterans but progress had been slow and unambitious.

Veterans - UK - Estimates - Wider - Ex-service

There are around 2.5million veterans in the UK, although some estimates suggest there may be as many as 6.2million in the wider ex-service community, including families.

New findings from Plaid Cymru suggest 50,000 veterans have mental health issues, including post-traumatic stress disorder brought on by conflict. Some suffer crippling flashbacks, nightmares, depression and anxiety attacks. Many fall into chronic alcohol and drug abuse, homelessness and crime.

November - Lives - Analysis - Veterans

Since November 2003, at least 274 have taken their own lives. The analysis said a further 6,000 veterans have nowhere to live and...
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