MEMBERS of the armed services will be offered support to help prevent them re-offending in a new initiative launched by Thames Valley Police (TVP) today (Thursday).
The Armed Forces Referral Service sees TVP working with SSAFA, The Armed Forces charity, in one of the first schemes of its kind in the country.
The aim is to help reduce crime, rates of offending and re-offending by providing better access to support for veterans and their families that come into contact with the police.
TVP Armed Forces Referral Service lead, PC Antony Colton, said: “Anyone who comes into contact with TVP and who is identified as having any links with the British Armed Forces will be offered the opportunity to be referred to SSAFA, a charity that offers practical, emotional and financial support to serving personnel, veterans and their families.
“The purpose of this service is to better support our Armed Forces community whilst helping reduce crime and rates of offending and re-offending.
“The Armed Forces Referral Service will make it easier for them to get the support they need, from organisations and charities best able to provide it.
“No matter how complex their needs, working together we can do more.”
Director of volunteer operations at SSAFA, Julie McCarthy, said: “Working with Thames Valley Police will ensure that we will be able to provide support to more veterans and their families who find themselves in the criminal justice system.
“We hope this project will help with the rehabilitation of veterans and in turn lower re-offending rates.”
Thames Valley Police is holding a live web chat on July 18, between 6.30pm and 7.30pm where the public can ask questions to a panel from the force about the Armed Forces Referral Service.
To join the session just visit thamesvp.coverpage.coveritlive.com