New ID cards rolled out to service leavers

ID cards illustrationsAll service leavers will receive a new ID card to mark their time in the armed forces.

A new ID card for armed forces veterans, which enables them to access specialist support and services, has started to be issued to service leavers.

From 18 February 2019, any personnel who have left the military since December 2018 will automatically be given one of the new ID cards, which will allow them to maintain a tangible link to their career in the forces.

The cards allow veterans to easily verify their service to the NHS, their local authority and charities, helping them to access support and services where needed.

All other veterans will be able to apply for a new ID card by the end of this year.

Tobias Ellwood, minister for defence people and veterans, said:

“We owe a huge debt of gratitude to the ex-forces community, and we are working hard to ensure they receive the support they deserve.”

The new ID card is one of three that are available to service leavers. Personnel leaving the armed forces are also able to keep their military IDs (MOD Form 90). Additionally, veterans can access a range of discounts through the Defence Discount Service, the official MOD-endorsed service for the armed forces.

Last year saw the launch of the Strategy for our Veterans, published jointly by the UK, Welsh and Scottish governments, which sets out the key areas of support for those who have left the armed forces. The consultation closed on 21 February.

Any veteran in need of support can contact the Veterans’ Gateway – the 24 hour service which signposts ex-forces personnel to the support available to them, including housing and financial advice, career guidance, and medical care from the NHS. Since being set up in 2017, the Veterans’ Gateway has received over 20,000 contacts, advising ex-forces personnel and their families.

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