Today’s defence related news includes coverage of Ministry of Defence and Cabinet Office Minister Johnny Mercer and Minister for the Cabinet Office, Oliver Dowden being appointed to oversee a new Office for Veterans’ Affairs.
Office for Veterans' Affairs
The Sun, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail and Daily Express report on the creation of the new Office for Veterans’ Affairs.
Johnny Mercer, who has been appointed Minister for Defence People and Veterans will work closely with the Minister for the Cabinet Office Oliver Dowden. Mr Mercer's new role will be a joint Ministry of Defence and Cabinet Office position, in order to allow the Minister to direct the work of the new Office for Veterans’ Affairs.
The newly created Office for Veterans’ Affairs inside the Cabinet Office will be staffed by officials from the Cabinet Office and Ministry of Defence (and others as necessary).
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:
People join our armed forces prepared to give their lives in defence of their country. In return, government and society owe them a debt long after their service is finished. As a veteran myself, I know the struggles that some people face. The Ministry of Defence welcomes the new Prime Minister’s appointment of the Minister for the Cabinet Office and Minister for Defence People and Veterans to ensure the needs of veterans are addressed right across government.
Minister for Defence People and Veterans Johnny Mercer said:
For the first time in its history, the UK Government will have an Office for Veterans’ Affairs to pull together all functions of government to ensure that when our armed forces personnel leave service, they are looked after in the manner that they deserve.
I am delighted with this role, and am resolutely determined to reset this country’s relationship with her veterans. I entered parliament to do precisely this; I am grateful for the opportunity this Prime Minister has given me to do this, and I look forward to getting on with the task at hand.
You can read more about the new Office for Veterans' Affairs here.
Operational ration packs
The Times reports the Ministry of Defence's decision from to change the operational ration packs from cardboard to plastic, to reduce waste.
An MOD spokesperson said:
In the last 18 months the decision was made to contain operational ration packs within plastic sleeves rather than cardboard boxes.
Not only does this design produce less waste overall, but it allows troops to carry several ration packs at once. Work is now ongoing to explore options for a biodegradable outer sleeve.