Ambulance service scoops honour for services support

Philip Astle, SCAS chief operating officer and, right, Paul Jefferies, assistant
director of operations
Philip Astle, SCAS chief operating officer and, right, Paul Jefferies, assistant director of operations

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South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust has won a prestigious award for its support of the armed services

The Ministry’s Employer Recognition Scheme recognises employers who are seen to actively support the forces in places of work.

Scas is one of just 33 organisations to receive the accolade and is one of two ambulance services in England.

It is considered the highest honour for organisations that have signed the armed forces covenant and shown outstanding support for those who serve and have served.

Chief operating officer at Scas Philip Astle, who retired as a colonel after a 25-year career in the Infantry, said:‘We are delighted to be recognised with this prestigious award.

‘It is very satisfying to meet so many ex-services personnel whose experience we can use to benefit patients in our region.

‘I am extremely proud that the Trust has such a positive and flexible approach, allowing reservists and cadets to continue their valuable service.

‘We are incredibly proud of our long-standing relationships with and support for our armed services.’

Defence secretary Sir Michael Fallon said: ‘These companies have shown the gold standard of commitment to supporting members of the Armed Forces, veterans, and their families. They have taken meaningful steps to ensure the Defence community are not disadvantaged by the sacrifice they make in helping keep this country safe. The actions of these employers make it crystal clear that regardless of size, location, or sector, employing people with military skills is good for business.’

The scheme, launched in 2014, has seen a rapid increase in participation and now attracts entries from companies in every part of the country.