22 November 2023

National alcohol and drug charity WithYou commit to LGBT+ Veteran Standard

News@2X (2)

Alcohol, drug and mental health charity WithYou is proud to be a named member of the Pride in Veterans Standard (PiVS) programme from Fighting With Pride: LGBT+ Military Charity.

The (PiVS) demonstrates that Veteran support and services are committed to being inclusive and welcoming to LGBT+ Veterans, serving personnel and their families.

WithYou offers an alcohol, drug and mental health support service for the armed forces community, including Veterans across the country with the aim of Armed Forces Champions being available to clients in each WithYou service.

As a named member, WithYou has committed to the understanding that the historic ban on LGBT+ people serving in the military may have impacted access to support for drugs, alcohol and mental health for Veterans and their families. Through the PiVS programme, WithYou will continue to ensure our Armed Forces Community programme:

  • warmly welcomes LGBT+ Veterans, serving personnel and their families
  • ensures all staff and volunteers have an awareness of the different challenges faced by LGBT+ people, in particular, those who were impacted by the Armed Forces “gay ban”
  • has a clear understanding of the needs of LGBT+ Veterans and tailors support to meet their specific needs
  • understands that for some LGBT+ Veterans, their experiences have impacted their mental health, so ensures any support in this area is tailored to meet their specific needs
  • promotes inclusion, dignity and respect for LGBT+ people in everything we do
  • recognises the different groups in the LGBT+ community and understand that each person’s needs may vary

Andrew Craze, WithYou for the Armed Forces Community, said:

“Being part of PiVS demonstrates WithYou’s commitment to delivering the highest standards for LGBT+ inclusion. By fostering an inclusive culture where people can access the support they need in a way that acknowledges their distinct experiences and respects their identities, supports not only our clients but also our staff and volunteers.

One of our strategic goals is to ‘reduce inequalities in treatment and recovery for marginalised people’ and we hope that committing to the Fighting With Pride Standard will support us in reaching that goal.

Collaborative work brings a range of benefits, such as diverse perspectives, improved efficiency, enhanced communication skills, increased creativity, higher motivation, trust-building, resource pooling, adaptability to change, shared responsibility, and networking opportunities. These advantages not only enhance the program but also benefit the staff involved.

Through the partnership with Fighting With Pride, updated training and lived experiences contribute positively, playing a crucial role in establishing a sustainable, industry-leading service.”

Craig Jones, Executive Chair, Fighting With Pride, said:

“WithYou’s support of Fighting With Pride is helping us expand our reach to LGBT+ Veterans who served in our Armed Forces but have struggled in later life. Through the Pride in Veterans Standard, they are demonstrating that a warm welcome exists for these veterans who access their services.

WithYou is a signed member of The Armed Forces Covenant as a promise by the nation to ensure that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly and inclusive of the LGBT+ community.

WithYou is a Silver Award holder of the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme, supporting members of the defence and armed forces community to join our workplace.”
Support for the Armed Forces Community from WithYou

If you would like to learn more about WithYou for the Armed Forces Community please contact armed.forces@wearewithyou.org.uk or you can contact a local service directly via our service finder.

WithYou also runs a free, confidential webchat service which offers expert advice on drugs, alcohol and mental health.

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