ONLY 1.2% of Thurrock’s veterans have received their Government ID cards to help them access the services they need.
The Government promised to provide every veteran in the UK with a card in 2019, designed to provide speedy access to health, housing, and charity services.
In December, Veterans’ Minister Johnny Mercer promised to roll out all remaining ID cards by this summer. However, analysis conducted by the Labour Party also showed that at the current rate of delivery, it will take more than a century to give every veteran a card.
To keep his promise, Mr Mercer needs to deliver 1.7 million in cards in the next three months, having handed out only a fraction of that so far, including only 39 out of 3,248 in Thurrock. Mrs Craft accused the Tories of failing veterans as Labour launch their Veterans’ Voice campaign.
Jen Craft, Labour’s candidate to be Thurrock’s MP said:
“Once again the Conservatives are failing people in Thurrock and this time it’s our veterans who are paying the price. The Tories talk the talk but when it comes to concrete measures that improve people’s lives, they’re failing to walk the walk. It’s simply wrong that the veteran ID rollout is so far behind.
“Labour will boost specialist support and bring down waiting times for veteran’s mental health services as part of our £1bn commitment to ensure everyone receives treatment within a month. As well as this we’ll fully incorporate the Armed Forces Covenant into law and fulfil the important moral contract our society makes with those who serve.”
Shadow Veterans Minister Rachel Hopkins said:
“The Conservatives like to talk up their support for our forces, but it’s clear that they are failing our veterans.
“The veterans ID card is supposed to help our society keep its promise to those who serve by ensuring quick access to services like healthcare. But Conservative ministers have delivered just a fraction of the cards needed.
“Our veterans don’t need empty promises, they need action. That’s why Labour has launched its Veterans’ Voice campaign to hear directly from former personnel and their families and put their lived experiences at the heart of our future policy offer.”