SSAFA Report The Nation’s Duty: challenging society’s disservice to a new generation of veterans

oldbaldy

LE
Moderator
#1
New report for SSAFA:
Duty
 
#2
I was talking today about the comparisons between UK and US veterans. It’s a poor assumption that they are better respected than us, whilst it is a US mantra to thank a veteran for their service, there’s rarely any feeling in it, it’s no different in US parlance to “have a nice day”.

Scratch the service and you will see real issues, VA Hospitals and services underfunded, little professional support and virtually no recognition of mental health issues, couple this with the lacklustre attitude towards veterans charities (“that’s what tax dollars are for”) and you will start to see US veterans don’t have it so great.
 
#3
Has there been any studies into the increase of bellthronks needing military charities help?
The number of veterans must fall every year as the old die off and the new are not in the same numbers, gets there always seems to be a big push for more help.
 
#4
Has there been any studies into the increase of bellthronks needing military charities help?
The number of veterans must fall every year as the old die off and the new are not in the same numbers, gets there always seems to be a big push for more help.
Likely to be because there are now more charities set up to pay staff exhorbitant wages assist a falling number of veterans.
 

oldbaldy

LE
Moderator
#5
@stacker1 , I've been involved with SSAFA for a considerable number of years. The numbers seeking assistance have gone down since I first started but the cases are taking longer and are more complex. & despite what some people might think about someone who has served a limited amount of time in uniform but a long time in civilian employment, both SSAFA & TRBL will go to the civilian charity first & are used to receiving claims.
 

oldbaldy

LE
Moderator
#6
I was talking today about the comparisons between UK and US veterans. It’s a poor assumption that they are better respected than us, whilst it is a US mantra to thank a veteran for their service, there’s rarely any feeling in it, it’s no different in US parlance to “have a nice day”.

Scratch the service and you will see real issues, VA Hospitals and services underfunded, little professional support and virtually no recognition of mental health issues, couple this with the lacklustre attitude towards veterans charities (“that’s what tax dollars are for”) and you will start to see US veterans don’t have it so great.
I agree, but the perception is they are recognised more & for the Facebook/Twitter/Instagram generation that's what matter.
 
#7
I agree, but the perception is they are recognised more & for the Facebook/Twitter/Instagram generation that's what matter.
Maybe that generation want to be told to grow up.
We get paid for a service, we don't do it for free, while I'm all those injured in combat getting extra help I'm a bit dubious that they are taking priority, all the bellends I've discharged recently get the brief from the welfare to phone SSAFA/RBL when they are out and struggling, which they be because they are bellends.
 
#8
Has there been any studies into the increase of bellthronks needing military charities help?
The number of veterans must fall every year as the old die off and the new are not in the same numbers, gets there always seems to be a big push for more help.
You can accompany me to a charity event, I wonder how many times you’ll say “what’s wrong with that cünt then?”
 
#9
You can accompany me to a charity event, I wonder how many times you’ll say “what’s wrong with that cünt then?”
Quite frequently I should imagine.
 

oldbaldy

LE
Moderator
#10
Maybe that generation want to be told to grow up.
We get paid for a service, we don't do it for free, while I'm all those injured in combat getting extra help I'm a bit dubious that they are taking priority, all the bellends I've discharged recently get the brief from the welfare to phone SSAFA/RBL when they are out and struggling, which they be because they are bellends.
Then maybe it's Welfare who don't understand what TRBL/SSAFA can or cannot do. For instance anyone with debt problems are sent to CAB.
 
#11
Then maybe it's Welfare who don't understand what TRBL/SSAFA can or cannot do. For instance anyone with debt problems are sent to CAB.
I didn't mention debt?
 
#13
Then maybe it's Welfare who don't understand what TRBL/SSAFA can or cannot do. For instance anyone with debt problems are sent to CAB.
I assume SSAFA does a great job, but I can’t be sure because I only have a vague idea of what it does.

I don’t even know for sure if it has helped me at some point, again I’m guessing they have.
 
#14
I assume SSAFA does a great job, but I can’t be sure because I only have a vague idea of what it does.

I don’t even know for sure if it has helped me at some point, again I’m guessing they have.
That's a good place to start for anyone.

My OH runs the local Branch and I help out, just not as a caseworker. From the Branchs perspective cases have gone through the roof, as have the "wants not needs" numbers, the "I've got PTSD cases" and the abuse.

One of the things that's clearly not understood is SSAFA research the case then apply to whichever Charities or Regimental Associations apply for monies and don't often supply financial assistance themselves.

Dingerr, if there's something you genuinely need or something that will assist in some way then ask your local Branch, they can yes yes as well as no.
 
#15
I’m big enough, daft enough and ugly enough to seek these things out, including asking on here, but the message needs to be clearer for some.

Saying “anything you need” is extremely wide, I feel that SSAFA needs to bandy some examples about, it’s not important to the person in need how their needs are met, just that they are met.

I also think SSAFA should start using people it helps to help get the message out, many of us want to give something back and it can also help with social interaction.

My concern is that the greedy make the most noise while the needy are often left in the shadows.
 

MrBane

LE
Moderator
Kit Reviewer
Reviews Editor
#16
I've read this report and it's done nothing but get me angry.

Point 1: "Most had not saved money while they were serving and had nothing to fall back on if they did not immediately find employment. As many had been living in military accommodation, they had an unrealistic idea of the cost of living in the outside world. A common problem they faced on leaving the Armed Forces was debt. "

- Who's to blame for that? Only them. Squarely them. They lived a fast lifestyle, perhaps pissed the cash up the wall and put nothing by. They obviously never took the time out to use some of the initiative the army had hopefully instilled in them to do some basic research into the cost of living. They no doubt continued to live the immediate gratification lifestyle and spent on credit with no means to pay it back in a timely fashion. I comment on this further down, but you can't blame anyone but them for this.

Point 2: "Resettlement training was hit and miss. Some had slipped through the net altogether because of ill-health or because they had been discharged unexpectedly. Others found the training was too narrowly focused or unsuitable for their needs. Most felt it did not offer practical, real-world advice that would have helped them adjust to civilian life "

- Never experienced resettlement so can't comment, but again, smacks of lack of preparation in general. Resettlement isn't the only option open to them.

Point 3: Finding a job was a greater challenge than many had anticipated – a fact some attributed to simple discrimination. Some found their skills did not transfer into civilian life and they could not land the type of job they had expected. Salary expectations were often unrealistic. Many were surprised they could not earn at least as much as they had been earning at the end of their military careers

- I can partially get the first bit. You leave thinking you're a ninja and realise civilian life gives no fucks for your qualifications. The Army would be wise to say that from the start. "You'll earn lots of qualifications but many won't work outside without some imaginative writing.". I also bet some set the bar too high, "I was on £35k a year. I'm not stacking shelves in Tesco." - a similar issue with many of the current generation, who won't do work they feel is beneath them,

Again, smacks of lack of preparation and study of the available fields of employment. Something a visit to any Job Centre would have helped move along.

Point 4: Finding affordable, suitable housing was more difficult than they had imagined, and they did not know how to navigate the system. Some felt they were victims of discrimination.

Welcome to the real world as experienced by everyone else. They were also probably a fair number who wanted to live in nice areas and didn't understand that you can't if you don't have the wage to match. See Point 3. Sometimes the only option is a scheme flat in a shithole for £130 a month.

Point 5: Adjusting to civilian life was often disorientating. Missing the camaraderie, structure and hierarchy of the Armed Forces, they found the military culture and sense of humour was often not understood or appreciated.

- What do you mean I can't be racist / sexist / discriminatory anymore? What do you mean I can't make jokes about the time Steve ate part of his own shit for a Strawberry porridge from my ORP? These are also people who perhaps never spent much time outside the gate, interacting with normal people and building up that foundation. The issue with that of course is when you leave, unless you remain in the area you'll lose that base of friends anyway.

This part can be difficult and requires work. I got around it by having no mates - a path to success if you ask me!

Other bits:

1. 77% of SSAFA veterans felt they were not fully prepared for civilian life - I talked about this previously. Initiative to act on a battlefield but not enough initiative to Google a few things about living on your own and what to expect in terms of job, wages, and outgoing costs. Somewhat excusable for the 20yr old who left home at 16 to join, no excuse for the 46yr old with 22 years served.

2. 81% of SSAFA veterans felt they were not as well respected as US veterans - So 81% of respondents are US Veterans and have experienced their system then? Otherwise that's just their perception and Dingerr hit the nail on the head. They're respected, but not as much as it might seem once you dig into their core support mechanisms.

3. 63% of employers said that if a job applicant was a veteran it would make no difference to their likelihood of hiring them - Why should it? Employers should not be biased to hiring any group automatically. It should all be individual merit. This is an empty point.

4. 74% felt they were not as well respected as Emergency Services - That's an obvious one. We have **** all to do with civilians for the majority of the time, and aren't rescuing kittens from trees, catching the guy that broke into your house or delivering life-saving medical aid to a toddler hit by a car. We're never going to be respected the same as the emergency services unless we have a physical and visible threat to this countries borders.

There were lots of other bits in there that pissed me off, but effectively, the majority of the comments in the report, putting aside those with physical or mental support needs, seems to be dealing with people who never prepared for life outside the Forces.

The one bit I totally agree with is that they need to introduce a savings culture. I don't see anything wrong with the Army holding a portion of your pay for you each month in escrow until you leave. A minimum of 10% for example and you can voluntarily increase it to 40% for example. Don't bother with Credit Unions, etc, just direct subtraction at the Gross and Net stage so you don't miss it.

Lads always pissed their money away - I used to rake in a profit in buying up expensive electronics once they realised they had no money for that weekend's lash. I did the same fast spend lifestyle until Telic, when I came back with a tours unspent wages. That's when I started my savings which were chunky by the time I left.

We need to change that overall spend attitude though.

Going back to my comment on about those who just don't seem to have prepared, this is where I'd like to see a full breakdown of the demographic, and key for me would be time served. I want to know how many with three years service are in there for support because they didn't prepare, and how many are in there with 22 who didn't prepare, and all those in between.

You can as I say, almost excuse the three year and out for not preparing, but again, if they just puttered around in the UK and left of their own accord with nothing really to show (as happens, a lot) should they get support? People who work for longer in Tesco don't get any support once they leave.

Until I see those breakdowns, the percentages are just emotive fluff that hold no foundation. For all I know, 80% of their respondents are three year and out mongs who really shouldn't be getting support from the Forces for having done nothing more than take a three year job and ******* off again (sans anything dramatic happening to them to dictate otherwise).

This goes back round to a previous thread, where I feel there should be criteria before people can get support for being ex-Forces. Complicated to work out I know, but why should Chas who joined at 18 for a larf or because he had nothing else to go to, did three years in barracks and then left because he hated it, be entitled to support? You don't get support like that from the majority of private business and industry - why are we any different?

People need help, absolutely. I just worry that whilst the numbers of those in the system are falling, there are still those who shouldn't really be there, clogging up the system and impeding support for those who genuinely need it and, controversially, have earned it.

The government has (somewhat) successfully been supporting people with no money and no job for decades. They can join that queue.
 
#17
The one bit I totally agree with is that they need to introduce a savings culture. I don't see anything wrong with the Army holding a portion of your pay for you each month in escrow until you leave. A minimum of 10% for example and you can voluntarily increase it to 40% for example. Don't bother with Credit Unions, etc, just direct subtraction at the Gross and Net stage so you don't miss it.
**** that, the majority of squaddies manage just fine, that 10% can go on paying of part of a mortgage or investing it somewhere decent rather the the lowest possible return the MOD/State will give.
Spastics would blow their lump sum and still go whining to the charities, who will accept them with open arms, because bellthronks who cant cope are a major reason for them to exist,
 
#18
@Mr Bane, an extremely accurate post and you could probably repeat it in 10 years time, but non the less there are issues affecting ex service personnel, it doesn’t matter what they should and shouldn’t have done, they have problems they need help with.

Nothing is perfect; people, systems, life, it’s just a matter of fighting through.
 
#19
@Mr Bane, an extremely accurate post and you could probably repeat it in 10 years time, but non the less there are issues affecting ex service personnel, it doesn’t matter what they should and shouldn’t have done, they have problems they need help with.

Nothing is perfect; people, systems, life, it’s just a matter of fighting through.
Then they can be treated the same as chav fuckwits rather than have military charities helping them,

The more you pander to ********* the more likely they are to continue acting like *********.
 
#20
I’m big enough, daft enough and ugly enough to seek these things out, including asking on here, but the message needs to be clearer for some.

Saying “anything you need” is extremely wide, I feel that SSAFA needs to bandy some examples about, it’s not important to the person in need how their needs are met, just that they are met.

I also think SSAFA should start using people it helps to help get the message out, many of us want to give something back and it can also help with social interaction.

My concern is that the greedy make the most noise while the needy are often left in the shadows.
All good points except SSAFA does those things already, eg giving real-life examples of people it helps, there are three at the link at the OP's link. Liked your post #18.
 

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