Dorset Council has been given the highest recognition for its support for the armed forces.
The authority received a gold award as part of the Ministry of Defence Employer Recognition Scheme at an official ceremony in Dartmouth.
Cllr David Walsh, armed forces champion for Dorset Council; Kevin Moore, programme coordinator for Dorset Armed Forces Covenant Programme; and Laura Cornette, business partner for Communities and Partnerships at Dorset Council attended the ceremony.
The council previously held a silver award, bestowed in 2021. To achieve the gold award, the council has developed a number of initiatives to encourage and support employees who are veterans, reservists, and cadet force adult volunteers, as well as spouses and partners of those serving in the armed forces.
To win an award from the Ministry of Defence, organisations must show that they provide 10 extra paid days leave for reservists and have supportive HR policies in place for veterans, reserves, cadet force adult volunteers and spouses and partners of those serving in the armed forces.
Cllr David Walsh said: “We are delighted to receive the MOD’s Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award.
“Dorset has a strong association with the armed forces, and we recognise the skills, knowledge and experience they bring to the council as well as the service they have given to our country.
“I am proud of our commitment to our armed forces community, and we will continue to work hard with our partners to progress and develop our work to support them.”
Matt Prosser, Dorset Council chief executive, said: “To be recognised for the progress we have made is great news – we know that our policies and enhanced opportunities are making a big difference to the lives of our armed forces community.
“The achievement highlights the work that has been ongoing to develop the council as a forces friendly employer.
“I want to thank all those involved for their hard work and commitment to our armed forces community.”
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