Wrexham MP, Sarah Atherton, has welcomed the launch of a new anti-bullying helpline for members of the armed forces
Set up by the Ministry of Defence and employee support organisation, Health Assured, the helpline has now gone live, and will be staffed around the clock by trained advisors and councillors.
Former soldier, Ms Atherton, said:
“I’m delighted to see the launch of the new anti-bullying helpline for members of our Armed Forces. It is a vital step in ensuring that everyone feels valued and respected as they serve our great country.”
Advisors will be independent from the chain of command and personnel experiencing or witnessing bullying, harassment or discrimination can report it - anonymously if need be.
Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace said:
“Defence works best as one team, working together to achieve the same aims, and treating those around us with dignity and respect.
“There is no place for bullying, harassment or discrimination in any corner of defence, and this helpline is a critical step towards stamping out unacceptable behaviour.”
Establishing the helpline was one of the key recommendations within Air Chief Marshal Wigston’s review into unacceptable behaviour across defence that was published last year.
Minister for Defence People and Veterans Johnny Mercer said:
“Unacceptable behaviour has no place in defence and will not be tolerated.
“The new helpline offers even more support for personnel across defence. The helpline is a safe space to discuss incidents and receive advice in order to take steps in challenging unacceptable behaviour.”
Trained counsellors will ensure concerns are dealt with quickly and appropriately, offering emotional support, information and guidance to callers.
The number is 0800 783 0334 and is free to call.