News & Views from the Campaign Team
|Posted by National Defence Medal on October 17, 2014 at 3:35 AM||comments (9)|
We feel that enough evidence has been gathered to officially call for the Government to honour its original commitment and by opening up this two year review and its findings to public scrutiny, if it is found wanting, to call for appropriate remedial action.
It is important this review does not become discredited like the earlier MoD two week shambles and that it finally provides our veterans with the political and public consensus as to whether or not, those who have served should be recognised by the award of a National Defence Medal.
Why would the Nation, and the Government, not wish to recognise our veterans who have kept the UK and its interests safe and secure since the ending of the Second World War, or at the very least honour them with a fair hearing?
We must give them the oppotunity to step in once again now that the evidence worringly points to yet another mishandling of too many aspects of the review.
|Posted by National Defence Medal on October 10, 2014 at 10:05 AM||comments (16)|
Our Campaign team have been contacted by several others who are equally unhappy at the conduct and conclusions of the recent medal review. So far we have heard from:
- National Service
- Post Armistice Korea
- ACSM Criteria
- Wound Medal
- Cold War
- Cyprus GSM (Reduction to 30days)
You can read one of the letters from DR M G Halligan, BA(Hons) MA(Ed) PhD MCMI FIET by following the link here: http://ndm-pr.webs.com/letters.htm
The rebuttals are from those who actually gave written and/or verbal submissions to the review team. How will they respond?
|Posted by National Defence Medal on October 8, 2014 at 3:40 AM||comments (17)|
Kevin Costner has recorded a special message for the British Armed Forces.
BFBS Radio Reporter Natasha Reneaux met him on the set of his new film and he offered to record the message.
Listen here: http://forces.tv/26413472
If the HD Committee, politicians and civil servants making decisions about the NDM had an ounce of his understanding, could they really deny 'The Noble' the recognition and respect they have earned.
|Posted by National Defence Medal on October 3, 2014 at 3:10 PM||comments (38)|
Now the Scottish Referendum is out of the way and the conference season is coming to an end, our effort must sadly focus on why the review was another failure, and an insult to so many veterans.
The first step (however painful) is to contact our MPs to inform them of the facts, and without the government spin. For those living abroad, use a relatives address, failing that write direct to the PM, as Veteran of HM Armed Forces you should not be ignored.
It is important that letters are written and sent over the next week, it will form part of the strategy which effectively becomes phase three of our campaign to get a ‘Fair’ hearing.
If you are unsure how to contact your MP, use this link: http://findyourmp.parliament.uk/
The issues are clear:
• Lack of openness and transparency with Sir John's final report and the process
• A greater bias given to the MoD pre medal meeting which was extremely brief to say the least and again lacked transparency.
• An HD committee badly briefed and again a lack of transparency and again a false representation of costs.
• Zero no opportunity to discuss any of these findings.
• This 2yr+ medal review has discredited itself and has turned out to be little better than the two week previous MOD discredited review.
• FOI information contradicts the costings used to make the decision.
• FOI rejected for any information surrounding the HD Committee.
• The country's internal systems in the way it treats its veterans are poor and designed to obstruct legitimate call for change.
• The review announcement made when MPs on holiday and the last possible moment before the Lords also went on Holiday.
• Disgraceful and disappointing way to treat the county's veterans.
• Campaign is factual, credible and merits support, we deserve a fair hearing and that has still failed to materialise.
• Recent medal decisions such as the NATO Africa medal, and some of the criteria around the Libya, and this latest tinkering with the volunteer reserve forces medal (VRSM) has only reinforced the case that the HD committee (and MoD) have lost all credibility and continue to perpetuate an already woefully inconsistent medal system which is no longer fit for purpose.
Please keep the group informed of your progress. Good luck and best wishes.
|Posted by National Defence Medal on September 26, 2014 at 5:45 AM||comments (32)|
Note: The NDM campaign remains apolitical and strives for ALL Party support. However it is important to know which political parties will directly support the NDM campaign:
Mike Hookem MEP announces a range of measures to aid Armed Forces veterans
UKIP’s defence spokesman, Mike Hookem, used his party conference speech in Doncaster today to announce a completely new range of policies aimed at helping armed forces veterans. The new policies include:
UKIP will create a dedicated Veterans Department within the ministry of defence based on the US Veterans department model. This new agency would provide a “one stop shop” which will bring together all veterans services to ensure service personnel get the after service care they deserve.
UKIP will demand that all veterans of all services are issued with a newly instituted National Defence Medal to recognise each individual’s contribution to the overall defence effort. This medal will be awarded irrespective of rank and length of service. The armed forces operate as a team and every aspect of that team deserves to be recognised.
UKIP will guarantee a job in the police force, prison service or border force, to those who have served for a minimum of twelve years. This will ensure we look after our servicemen, secure our borders, get more police on the streets and have safer prisons.
UKIP will change the points system for social housing to give priority to ex service men and women and those returning from active service.
UKIP will introduce a Veterans Service Card that will guarantee fast track access to NHS mental health care. UKIP do not underestimate the damage that PTSD has on service men and women and their families and we are determined to stop this travesty, especially considering that mental health issues can surface many years after the event.
UKIP guarantee that all the entitlements outlined above will be extended to servicemen from overseas. UKIP is committed to putting in place legislation that will give equal rights and benefits for all armed forces personnel, no matter of their ethnic origin.
“As a veteran myself, I am very proud to announce UKIP’s new approach to veterans affairs, as politicians in this country have ignored the military covenant for far too long. As a nation, we have a duty to help veterans readjust to civilian life, to find a job and get on the housing ladder, as well as providing any healthcare required as soon as possible. This is especially important when you think that many members of todays armed force have served multiple tours of combat duty over the last 14 years and may need a great deal of extra help and support.”
“UKIP’s intention to create a Veterans Affairs department within the MoD will totally change the current sporadic approach to veterans services by providing a ‘one stop shop’ for veterans returning to civilian life and for those who need that little extra help in their post service life. At the same time, our guaranteed career path for veterans with more than 12 years service will allow armed forces personnel to plan for a long term career in the public sector, as well as making sure we have the right calibre of person filling important roles within those sectors. With regard to housing and heath care, it seems only right to me to make sure that troops returning to civilian life go to the front of the queue, especially considering what they have risked in defence of our nation.”
|Posted by National Defence Medal on September 16, 2014 at 11:05 AM||comments (18)|
The question posed:
Would an independent Scotland withdraw from the imperial honours system like Australia and New Zealand?
Would an independent Scotland instigate a Scottish Defence Force Medal?
Thank you for your letter of 11 September to the Minister for Transport and Veterans. I have been asked to reply. I can advise that an honours system would continue in an independent Scotland. The process would remain the same as at present whereby nominations would be processed through the civil service and independent of politicians.
As Q.584 states in Scotland’s Future, any amendments to the Honours system would be agreed with the Royal Household to reflect Scotland’s independence.
One thing we can be sure of, a Scottish Government will be just as vague as any other…………………
|Posted by National Defence Medal on August 21, 2014 at 10:50 AM||comments (103)|
The cost of archive retrieval of personal records, put out to contract at £25.00 a time, has been responsible for the failure of Government to recognise millions of veterans.
Finally, eight months after Sir John had submitted his ‘secret’ recommendations, a Government statement was made on the 29 July 2014 in the House of Lords, the day before they left for their summer holidays, and a week after the MPs had left for their summer recess. The HD Committee had evidently not been persuaded that a strong case could be made at this time for the institution of the NDM and it was too costly. Debate and questions in the House on a sensitive matter had been avoided.
Read the full release on the Home Page
|Posted by National Defence Medal on August 17, 2014 at 2:00 PM||comments (34)|
Veterans feel betrayed by 'final word' decision on historic medals claim.
British veterans from wars and conflicts around the world have lost a battle for recognition of their service to Crown and country. A decision by Ministry of Defence officials, that only some of the hundreds of thousands of servicemen and women who served in conflicts and operations ranging from Aden and Suez to the Berlin Airlift should be awarded medals, has provoked a bitter row.
Read more from the Independent article: CLICK HERE
|Posted by National Defence Medal on August 1, 2014 at 2:40 AM||comments (140)|
The 'Options Paper' as presented to the HD Committe can be found by following the link below. It was then down to the judgement of the HD Committee which options to select:
You can also see the detail of the other medal claims, of particular interest is the 'Other Claims' and the comments of the Advisory Military Sub-Committee of the Committee on the Grant of Honours, Decorations, at a meeting from August 2013!
There is plenty for us to review and then construct a considered and cogent response.
|Posted by National Defence Medal on July 30, 2014 at 4:25 AM||comments (64)|
Sir John also reviewed the case for a National Defence Medal. An options paper produced by the Cabinet Office will also be placed in the Libraries of both Houses. The Committee on the Grant of Honours, Decorations and Medals is not persuaded that a strong enough case can be made at this time, but has advised that this issue might usefully be reconsidered in the future. In such circumstances, the criteria for the award of a medal would need careful consideration, including length of service, good conduct and the possibility of retrospection.
In the meantime, Ministers have agreed that the eligibility requirements for the Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, which is currently awarded only to other ranks and not to officers, should be harmonised for the future.
Next steps under consideration.