The Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Children today set out the Welsh Government’s ongoing support and services for Wales’s Armed Forces community.
In a statement to the Assembly ahead of Remembrance Day, Communities Secretary Carl Sargeant said it was important never to forget those who courageously gave their lives to protect the freedom we have today.
He outlined a number of initiatives the Welsh Government had introduced to support the Armed Forces community in Wales. These include:
- A refreshed Package of Support and separate guide for serving personnel and their families.
- A £50,000 grant to 160 Infantry Brigade and HQ in Wales towards the delivery of their Armed Forces Employability Pathway aimed at giving young men and women an insight into the Army, together with civilian work-based vocational training
- A Housing Referral Pathway to ensure former members of the Armed Forces community are supported to find suitable accommodation and avoid homelessness
- Keep Safe Cymru for Veterans which allows Veterans with specific health needs, and who may need additional support from the emergency services in times of crisis, to share their details with the police whose response will be modified accordingly.
Carl Sargeant said:
“This time of the year particularly reminds us of all those who have fought in conflicts to preserve the way of life we have today.
“This year we have commemorated some of the biggest battles of the First World War. We remember those who lost their lives at Jutland and during the Battle of the Somme, especially in Mametz Wood; thousands of Welsh Servicemen made the ultimate sacrifice.
“Through our Programme for Government we remain fully committed to providing ongoing support and services for our present Armed Forces community.”
First Minister Carwyn Jones will also pay tribute to Wales’s service men and women at a series of Remembrance Day events this week. The First Minister will join the Royal British Legion at the opening of the Welsh Field of Remembrance, where he will plant a tribute and read ‘Mametz Wood’ in honour of the 4,000 Welsh soldiers who died or were injured during the battle.
On Armistice Day, the First Minister will visit Caernarfon to observe a two minute’s silence and visit the iconic sculpture ‘Poppies: Weeping Window’ by artist Paul Cummins and designer Tom Piper, presented as part of the UK-wide tour by 14-18 NOW.
The First Minister will join the Merchant Navy Association at the Seafarers Memorial in Cardiff Bay on Saturday, before laying a wreath on behalf of the people of Wales at the National Service of Remembrance for Wales at the Welsh National War Memorial in Cardiff.
The First Minister said:
“This year’s Remembrance Day events are especially poignant as we commemorate 100 years since the Battle of the Somme.
“It is important we take the opportunity to pay tribute to those who lost their lives, paying the ultimate price for our freedom. Those who fought bravely for our futures must never be forgotten.”