Lilian Greenwood, Member of Parliament for Nottingham South has backed British troops by pledging her support for a written, legally-binding Military Covenant.
A Military Covenant would outline the principles Government must uphold to recognise the unique nature of military service and provide the highest standards of care for our service personnel, veterans and their families.
David Cameron stood on Ark Royal in June 2010 and promised ‘a new military covenant that's written into the law’, but he has broken his promise.
Lilian Greenwood said:
“The moral contract between the nation and our Services, and the responsibilities of Government towards the whole Forces community, should be protected and strengthened and never sidestepped.
“The Conservative led-government has been in power for less than a year but has already failed to meet many of its commitments to our Armed Forces. The harmful human impact of its defence plans is becoming clearer and clearer. It is now more important than ever that Ministers are held to account for their actions.
“Those who give so much for our country deserve the highest levels of support, care and reward. Enshrining a Military Covenant into law will demonstrate our whole country’s commitment to those who choose to protect us”.
The Nottingham South MP has also criticised changes proposed by the Government to forces’ pensions that could leave war widows and injured soldiers hundreds of thousands of pounds out of pocket.
The Conservative-led Government’s decision to link forces’ pensions with the Consumer Prices Index (CPI), rather than the generally higher Retail Prices Index (RPI) previously used, will disproportionately affect members of the forces. A corporal who has lost both his legs in a bomb blast in Afghanistan will miss out on £500,000 in pension and benefit-related payments. Similarly, the 34-year-old wife of a staff sergeant killed in Afghanistan would be almost £750,000 worse off over her lifetime.
Lilian Greenwood added:
“The deficit is temporary but this cut is permanent. Ministers must explain why those serving in Afghanistan now, and war widows who have lost those closest to them, should have poorer pensions for the rest of their lives. The Government must think again.”