Women Veterans Strategy hailed as ‘significant milestone’

David Duguid MP has hailed plans for a Women Veterans Strategy as a “significant milestone” for female Armed Forces personnel in the North East after receiving confirmation it will be published this Spring.

The strategy will look at the specific needs and challenges faced by women veterans, and will also celebrate their successes.

In a question to Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer, Mr Duguid spoke of his admiration for women veterans such as Turriff resident Morag Lightning, who served in the Royal Air Force Police and was recently recognised in the King's New Year Honours list.

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Mr Duguid, the Banff and Buchan Conservative MP, said the publication of a Women Veterans Strategy will hugely benefit ex-service personnel like Morag, many of whom face issues accessing support services, particularly where those initiatives are inadvertently orientated towards men.

David Duguid MP has welcomed the newsDavid Duguid MP has welcomed the news
David Duguid MP has welcomed the news

Working with experts in academia, charities and other government departments, this will cover areas such as mental health, physical welfare and employment.

Mr Duguid said: “Our ex-service women such as Morag are an integral part of the Armed Forces community and the sacrifices they made to defend our nation are immense.

“The Women Veterans Strategy, which has been assisted by research from Robert Gordon University, is a significant milestone in recognising the experiences of women veterans and ensuring we have effective and tailored help to address their needs.

“It’s vital that we listen to these women, celebrate their successes, and deliver adequate support to assist them with any issues they may be battling.”

UK Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer said: “The government will publish its first women veterans strategy in the Spring, focusing on specific needs of women veterans.

"The Office of Veterans Affairs has funded £445,000 to better understand the experience of women veterans, and to increase support for those who've experienced military trauma.

“I pay huge tribute to Morag, and the many others that I've met over the last few years who work night and day, really at the coalface of veterans care and veterans policy.”