On Monday 29th June, employers, Reservists and Cadet Adult Instructors from every region in the UK had the unique opportunity to attend the Houses of Parliament to meet MPs from around the country.
Regional SaBRE Campaign Director for East Anglia Kristina Carrington attended the event with the Deputy Director of HR for Ipswich Hospital Jennifer Canham and one of their Reservist Corporal Debbie Robinson who serves with 158 Regiment RLC. Jennifer said “It was a privilege to be invited to the Houses of Parliament to meet with the Minister for Reserves, Julian Brazier and other MPs, to discuss the benefits of working with the Ministry of Defence, and particularly the employment and deployment of Reservists, and training programmes for the military, and the advantages this brings to both the MoD and the NHS.”
Guests to the Jubilee Room, jointly hosted by the Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Associations for Greater London and the South East were greeted by Madeleine Moon MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Reserves and Cadets and Julian Brazier MP, Minister for Reserves who thanked the employers and Reservists for their ongoing support and commitment.
Mr Wilfred Mitchell from the Federation of Small Business for Northern Ireland addressed those gathered and spoke about the positive effect that having Reserves and Cadet Adult Instructors can bring to businesses. Cpl Graham Charlesworth, an Army Reservist with D (Northumberland Hussars) Squadron Queen’s Own Yeomanry, spoke about the generous support he receives from his employer Elddis Transport (Consett) Ltd and Squadron Leader Darran Williams who organises the Air Training Corps participation in the Royal International Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford explained that he wouldn’t be able to fulfil his ATC role without the support of his employer, Airbus.
Guests were then treated to a tour of both Houses by the MPs from their respective regions.
Madeleine Moon MP stated :
‘Britain’s defence and security is increasingly dependent on the men and women in our Reserve and Cadets forces. The vital role they play in the nation’s defence and in their local communities must not be hidden from view. Our armed forces are not a distant and separate group in society. They are composed of men and women working alongside civilians on a daily basis in our communities. It was a pleasure to honour their hard work, sacrifice and bravery at a reception in Parliament on Monday. It is important that they know that their voices are heard across both Houses of Parliament. Having been offered an insight into the world of Reserves and Cadets, MPs were delighted to show representatives from their regions around the Palace. I was particularly pleased to meet Reserve and Cadet forces from Airbus in Wales, a major employer in Newport and Flintshire. Not only do they do important work at the cutting edge of aerospace engineering, they also give up their spare time in defence of their country and in the service of their communities.’