The government’s contradictory stance on the Armed Forces Covenant

A new Bill is being brought forward that will see the Armed Forces Covenant enshrined in law.

The Armed Forces Bill is being introduced to the House of Commons later today.

It will embed the Covenant into law by introducing a legal duty for relevant UK public bodies to have due regard to the principles of the Covenant – a pledge to ensure the Armed Forces community is treated fairly.

The legislation will help prevent service personnel and veterans being disadvantaged when accessing services like healthcare, education and housing, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) said.

It will also improve the Service Justice System for personnel wherever they are operating, the MOD added.

Whilst I fully support enshrining the Armed Forces Covenant into law (Hilary Meredith Solicitors was the first law firm to sign the Covenant), this sits at odds with parts of the Overseas Operations Bill.
In the Overseas Operations Bill, the six-year longstop on civil claims will significantly disadvantage those who have served abroad.

It is totally unacceptable for the Government to legislate to deny those who put their lives on the line for our country overseas the same employer liability rights as the UK civilians they defend. It is also a breach of the Armed Forces Covenant. The contradiction here is as clear as day!

Hilary Meredith