New commissioner post for military veterans will ‘unblock potential’

The Scottish Government has revealed that military veterans are to have their own commissioner – the first time such a post has been created in the UK.

Veterans Minister Keith Brown, a former Royal Marine, announced the move on Tuesday saying that when appointed the commissioner would work with service charities, local authorities and health boards to identify areas where public services might provide greater support for veterans.

In a move that will be particularly welcomed in Moray where thousands of ex-servicemen once based at Lossiemouth and Kinloss chose to make their permanent home.

Mr Brown said; “This new commissioner will be a radical innovation, acting as an ambassador for veterans and helping to remove the barriers that prevent ex-servicemen and women from realising their full potential.

“As well as addressing the needs of veterans who are particularly disadvantaged the commissioner will develop a wider focus on unblocking the potential of veterans, so their unparalleled skills and experience can benefit Scotland.”

The move was widely welcomed with the chairman of Veterans Scotland, Colonel Martin Gibson, saying: “This strong commitment by the government will allow the commissioner to further harmonise the services and support right across the public sector available to veterans throughout Scotland.”

A Scottish Government spokesman said last night that the projected costs of the new post at around £250,000 would be largely similar to that of the Scottish Roadworks Commissioner.

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