Yorkshire Ambulance Service continues to work on its commitment to the Armed Forces community and Employer Recognition Scheme
In March 2021, Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust formally pledged its support for the Armed Forces by signing the Armed Forces Covenant (AFC). The Trust achieved Veteran Aware status in September 2021, followed by the achievement of the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) Bronze Award. It also holds membership for the Veterans Covenant Healthcare Alliance (VCHA), with its re-accreditation approved on 20 February 2023.
With five per cent of the Trust’s volunteer Community First Responders from the veteran community and 25 per cent of the Hazardous Area Response Team (HART) made up of reservists and veterans, the Trust continues to work on its commitment to support those who have served in the military by successfully implementing several changes since signing the AFC and receiving its Veteran Aware status and ERS Bronze Award.
Actions taken to create change
The following changes are helping to further support their commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant
- A review of the Trust’s reservist policies to ensure they are enhanced, and not disadvantageous, to its Armed Forces communities or their families.
- Active participation in employer connect events and recruitment events in partnership with the community engagement and recruitment teams.
- Formation of a steering group to drive the work supporting the Armed Forces and support the launch of an Armed Forces Network.
- Utilisation of Electronic Staff Record (ESR) functionality to record personnel with military status, including reservists, veterans and adult cadet volunteers.
- Signing up to the ‘Step into Health’ programme, which supports the Armed Forces community in NHS careers.
- Actively recruiting from the Armed Forces community and offering Guaranteed Interview Scheme (GIS) places for those in clinical and non-clinical roles.
- Raising awareness of key dates relevant to the Armed Forces through internal communications.
- Ensuring the Trust’s health and well-being offer is relevant and up to date.
Going for Silver
The Trust is committed to pursuing ERS Silver Award in 2023 and continuing its efforts to support military staff whilst focusing on stakeholder collaboration that will build the support available to colleagues via its Armed Forces Network.
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