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Gold Award Accepted by Mayor


The Mayor of South Tyneside last night accepted a prestigious award on behalf of the council.

Cllr Ken Stephenson took receipt of the Ministry of Defence Employment Recognition Scheme Gold award, which recognises the council's commitment to military personnel.


He was handed the certificate by Armed Forces Champion, Cllr Ed Malcolm, at a meeting of Borough Council in South Shields Town Hall.


Cllr Malcolm congratulated the council for the leadership shown and the work carried out by the council and its partners which led to Gold status being achieved.


He said: "I would like to acknowledge the massive contribution made by our partners, including South Tyneside Homes, armed forces charity SSAFA, 205 Battery Royal Artillery and the Royal British Legion, without which we would not be able to provide this comprehensive support to our armed forces community."


The Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) encourages employers to support military personnel and inspire other organisations to follow their lead.


A report was presented at the meeting of council outlining the support offered by the council and its partners to military personnel which led to the award.

Previously members heard about campaigns, initiatives and events - including WW1 Centenary commemorations - across the Borough that demonstrate the council's commitment to service personnel.

Cllr Malcolm, who had earlier been presented with the award at a presentation ceremony in London, added: "Achieving gold reflects our dedication and efforts in supporting our reservist employees and their families.

"But it doesn't stop with this award; we and our partners will continue to go above and beyond to help ex- servicemen and women in our community in recognition of the sacrifices they make."


The Council pledged its commitment back in December 2011 when it signed the official Armed Forces Community Covenant - a voluntary statement of mutual support between the civilian and local armed forces communities.


The Ministry of Defence launched their Employer Recognition Scheme in 2014, with South Tyneside's work formally recognised with a Bronze award shortly after, followed by a Silver award in 2016. Gold is the highest level of award and is made on an assessment of evidence of working and inspiring other organisations to support armed forces communities.

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