Bank fines used to help veterans

Michael Moore MP
Michael Moore MP

Money from fines levied on banks is to be used to fund training for armed services veterans and their families.

Borders MP, Michael Moore backed last week’s UK Government’s announcement of funding to improve mental health care for Armed Forces veterans in the Borders and across the UK.

Almost £600,000 from the LIBOR fund – fines levied on the banks for attempting to manipulate the LIBOR interest rate – will go to Mental Health First Aid, in partnership with Combat Stress, the Royal British Legion and SSAFA – the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association – to design and provide the training.

The funding will be used to train 200 veterans, their families and people who support them over the next 18 months, who will then go on themselves to train around 6,200 members of the Armed Forces community across the UK by the summer of 2015.

Mr Moore said: “As local MP, I campaigned for many years for improvements to the armed forces covenant to ensure that members of the armed forces with mental health needs, both past and present, were properly cared for. Since the covenant was published in May 2011 we have delivered a number of improvements in mental health care provision. These include the integration of mental health assessments into routine service medicals and the establishment of a 24 hour helpline and a support and advice website.

“This new step will add to this work and will make a real difference to our veterans here in the Borders and across the country. Training veterans and their families to spot the early signs of mental health problems will see more people receive timely and effective help.”