Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service re-sign Armed Forces Covenant

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service have reaffirmed their commitment to the Armed Forces community at a special event held at Service Headquarters.

On Wednesday 1 March 2023, with current Reservists and Armed Forces personnel in attendance, Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service’s Chief Fire Officer Phil Garrigan alongside Merseyside Fire and Rescue Authority Chair Les Byrom were joined by Lt Cdr Ellen Shephard, Royal Navy, and Wing Commander Martin Morris, AIR Regional Employer Engagement Officer – North West to re-sign the Armed Forces Covenant.

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service is committed to supporting the Armed Forces community more widely through the Armed Forces Covenant.

The Covenant is a promise by the nation that those who serve or have served in the Armed Forces, and their families, should be treated fairly and should not face disadvantages when seeking to access public or private goods and services in the UK.

The Covenant is a voluntary pledge. Organisations may choose to sign up in order to demonstrate their support for the Armed Forces Community and for the principles of the Covenant. All organisations – public, private or voluntary and small, medium or large – are welcome to sign the Covenant.

MFRS CFO Phil Garrigan said:

“As an Authority, we recognise that the quality of our service to the community is reliant on the people that we employ, amazing people who protect the public every day. People who extol our service values of courage, integrity and compassion in everything they do. More recently have sought to create a workforce that is diverse in its representation and in its thinking, one which share those values.

Often those people come from the military where they have demonstrated, in some of the most challenging of situations, their commitment to serve.

This week we reaffirm our commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant in recognition of the value that serving personnel, reservists and veterans bring to our organisation.

In doing so we will continue to uphold the principles of the Armed Forces Covenant and sustain our positive collaborative relationships with the MoD and our partner stakeholders, including our continued support of our Local Authority partners in their commitment to our Armed Forces.”

Lt Cdr Ellen Shephard, Royal Navy added:

“Thank you to MFRS for their continued support, it is a significant commitment that is felt by those who are serving regular, in reserve capacity, the youth and cadets groups, volunteers, and the families of all of those I’ve mentioned. It has a real wraparound feeling of commitment because it is not just the 36,000 serving in the Royal Navy but also the wider Maritime Reserves, and the absolute community that that brings alongside our light blue and green colleagues as well. We take pride and pleasure in seeing you and others who sign the Covenant succeed."

MFRS is currently a Silver award holder of the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme and these renewed pledges form part of the ongoing commitment that the Service is making to expand its internal offer for colleagues who have links to the Armed Forces.

MoD Regional Employer Engagement Director Jan Cox said:

“As a reservist of 39 years with the Royal Navy, I could only do what I’ve done because of employers like Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service supporting me during my career. We want to thank MFRS and recognise their support in everything that they do in uniform as Firefighters but also in uniform as Reservists and Veterans of the past.”