Call for soldiers support
Feb 8 2008 by Barry Gibson, Huddersfield Daily Examiner
FORMER soldiers need extra help to tackle combat stress, a councillor has said.
Clr David Woodhead wants Kirklees Council to commit £300,000 to treat mental health conditions of ex-servicemen.
The Holme Valley North Lib Dem will propose the move at the annual budget meeting on February 27.
Clr Woodhead said: “Last year my motion calling for extra money to tackle the health problems suffered by retired soldiers was supported by the council.
“But the Conservative cabinet have not earmarked any funds for this issue in their budget proposals.”
Clr Woodhead said many former soldiers suffered mental health problems.
He said: “There are just over five million ex-service personnel in the country – meaning there could be as many as 32,000 ex-soldiers living here in Kirklees.
“More than half of all ex-soldiers report a long-term illness or disability, and they are three times more likely than average to suffer from mental health problems.
“We want to see extra money spent on tackling mental health problems and helping ex-soldiers get into employment. We owe it to our soldiers to ensure that we help them settle back into civilian life.
“I urge all councillors to back this funding plea.”