We are a forces-friendly employer and have achieved the Gold standard, Ministry of Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) – this scheme encompasses awards for employer organisations that pledge, demonstrate or advocate support to defence and the armed forces community and align their values with the Armed Forces Covenant.
The Armed Forces programme encompasses diverse project streams including:
- Our Armed Forces Network
- Armed Forces Insight Days – raising awareness of roles within NWAS and recruitment support
- One to one support to service leavers and veterans throughout the recruitment process
- Collaborative events with ERS Gold Alumni NHS trusts
- Annual Reserves and Armed Forces Day events
- Honorary contracts for paramedics from the Armed Forces
- Work placements for service leavers and veterans
- Supporting local and regional careers events for service leavers and veterans – including the annual Career Transition Partnership careers fair
- Partnership working with leading organisations that support service leavers, veterans and members of the reserve forces
- Sharing good practice with businesses and NHS trusts
- Attending NHS Employers Armed Forces Network regional meetings and national conferences
- Pledged to Step Into Health
To demonstrate our commitment to the Armed Forces community, we offer a Guaranteed Interview Scheme for Veterans and currently serving Reservists and Cadet Force Adult Volunteers, as long as candidates meet the minimum essential criteria for the role.
Partnership working has been developed with both the military and key organisations across the North West that support the armed forces community including:
- Career Transition Partnership
- College of Military Veterans
- HQ NW Armed Forces – Fulwood Barracks
- Step Into Health (NHS Employers)
- SSAFA, the Armed Forces Charity
- The Poppy Factory
- The Reserve Forces’ & Cadets Association of the North West and Isle of Man (RFCA)
- The Royal British Legion
- Walking with the Wounded
In November 2020 North West Ambulance Service became the first ambulance service in the UK to be awarded Veteran Aware accreditation from the Veterans Covenant Healthcare Alliance (VCHA).
This is a real honour for NWAS and demonstrates close working with the armed forces community and partnership working. This recognition means that we have demonstrated that NWAS supports the armed forces community as an employer, that we ensure that veterans, reservists, cadet force adult volunteers and other members of the armed forces community amongst our workforce are looked after, and that we have good links with other local services and service charities.
In 2019 we were proud to be shortlisted for the Reservist Support Initiative Awards at the Health Service Journal (HSJ) awards.