Renewing Our Commitments

A summary of major achievements to support Scotland's Armed Forces community and future priorities for action.


The Scottish Government is committed to ensuring that no member of the Armed Forces, Service family member or veteran in Scotland faces disadvantage when accessing services and support.

Scotland has a large and vibrant Armed Forces community, encompassing Regular and Reserve personnel, veterans and their families. According to Poppyscotland’s 2014 survey, the size of the community is estimated at around 530,000 including dependants; almost 10% of the population. Many are people who were born in Scotland, had a full and fulfilling military career, and then returned to their homes and families. More and more however, they are people who grew up elsewhere but have chosen to make Scotland their home.

What often sets the Armed Forces community apart is the demand placed upon them in the course of their duties and the hardships this can and does place upon them and their families. While serving, personnel benefit from dedicated arrangements for healthcare, accommodation and a range of other services. However when transitioning to civilian life, this can mean additional support is sometimes needed. A small minority occasionally need specific support to access those public and support services we all take for granted. This is a disadvantage that Scottish Ministers firmly believe should be addressed and removed.

“...the size of the community is estimated at around 530,000 including dependants; almost 10% of the population.”

Public services should be available in such a way that meets the needs and aspirations of all those who require them. That is why the Scottish Government published ‘Our Commitments’ in September 2012 to set the strategic direction of how the Scottish Government and its partners would support the Armed Forces community in Scotland. Collaboration has been vital, bringing in partners in the public, private and third sectors, as well as local authorities, the Armed Forces in Scotland, and the Ministry of Defence. Veterans Scotland and its four pillar heads have worked hard to deliver valued support and shape the agenda, as well as a wide range of other charities and organisations across Scotland.

As we near the end of this Scottish Parliament, this is an opportunity to renew our commitments: to reflect on the progress made since 2012 and to identify future priorities.


Email: Nadine Milne

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