Results 1–20 of 5000 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Tobias Ellwood

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Universal Credit (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: As veterans are civilians, the majority of care comes from other Government Departments and devolved Administrations. The Ministry of Defence works closely with other stakeholders to target and improve veterans’ access to services, including those who are eligible for universal credit.

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Universal Credit (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: When those who have served in uniform depart for civilian street it is very important that they are aware of the benefits for which they may or may not be eligible. Our transition programme now includes making sure that we improve the understanding of what armed forces personnel veterans can receive. I am pleased to say that the Secretary of State is working with the Secretary of State for...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Universal Credit (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: I am aware that my hon. Friend has done a huge amount of work on this important matter, not least by lobbying me many times. She will be aware that the armed forces covenant is growing—we now have almost 4,000 signatories—but it is important that if somebody signs the covenant it meets their expectations. If it fails or falls foul of that, we need a system to recognise that. She raises a...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Universal Credit (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: The hon. Gentleman raises this matter almost weekly, but he misses the point. We ensure that we look after our veterans and they know whether they are eligible for universal credit. We do that by ensuring synergy and joint working between the Department for Work and Pensions and the Ministry of Defence, not just in this area but in health and education and right across the piece. The armed...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Universal Credit (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: I am grateful for that question. It has been raised many times and it is important to put it in context and in perspective. Not everybody who joins the armed forces will be affected—just two in every 1,000 people —but they need the attention and support that they absolutely deserve. The Secretary of State is meeting the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions to discuss that very matter.

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Outsourced Contracts (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: The Ministry of Defence regularly monitors the performance of all contractors, including outsourced key services. This is done via the use of contract performance indicators and action is taken when standards are not met.

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Outsourced Contracts (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: I do not agree with the hon. Gentleman’s assessment. The Minister for the Armed Forces, my hon. Friend right hon. Member for Milton Keynes North (Mark Lancaster) may have the opportunity to speak on this matter in a little bit more detail in a later question, but we are seeing a change in the trend. More people are showing an indication of interest in the armed forces. It is important we...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Outsourced Contracts (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: My hon. Friend raises an important issue. It is not just the big companies—aerospace and defence companies—we must look to support, but the SMEs, which are in every one of our constituencies. I am assured by the Under-Secretary of State for Defence, my hon. Friend the Member for Pudsey (Stuart Andrew), the Minister with responsibility for procurement, that that is exactly what is happening.

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Outsourced Contracts (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: I do not agree with the hon. Gentleman’s assessment; it is important that we provide value for money. The defence budget is under pressure, as are all other Government Departments. He is absolutely right to say that Capita was going to be given the contract. It is subject to a legal challenge and we have to wait to see that mature, but let us not forget that even on Labour’s watch we had...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Outsourced Contracts (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: The issue is to do with the key performance indicators, as I think the hon. Gentleman will agree. According to the standards that we see, 97% meet the requirements. We find that those indicators are set too low, and the Secretary of State is very conscious of that and of the need to raise them. We are reconciling the defence real estate to make sure that we improve accommodation, but I will...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Monitoring Schemes (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: Our resettlement programmes continue to develop to ensure that the transition from service to civilian life for all personnel is conducted as smoothly as possible. I am sure that my hon. Friend will join me in welcoming the fact that 95% of personnel who participate in our career transition programme are in work or education within six months of departure.

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Monitoring Schemes (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: My hon. Friend raises two issues. I join him in paying tribute to Care after Combat; what it does to provide support for those who find themselves imprisoned or on the wrong side of the law is absolutely brilliant, and we should all tip our hats to that. However, we must also recognise that the defence budget is under strain. It was affected by the spending review and austerity measures. In...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Monitoring Schemes (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: I know that the hon. Gentleman knows a lot about this issue. He is absolutely right to say that the advancement in the science now reflects the fact that even if someone can walk away from a blast, they can be affected long term by what has happened, and we are learning from the Americans on that. We have our transition programme, which can last up to two years to make sure that we manage the...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: UK Personnel: Local Support Services (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: Every local authority has signed the armed forces covenant, and the MOD works with local authorities and partner organisations to ensure that there is fair access to local support services.

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: UK Personnel: Local Support Services (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: I thank the hon. Gentleman for the tone in which he has raised this matter. He had the courtesy to raise it before questions. I should be delighted to meet him afterwards to see whether we can bring about some reconciliation, and make this work.

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Education (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: When armed forces personnel put their hand up and decide to leave the armed forces, most of them participate in a transition programme, and that includes the opportunity to complete examinations such as A-levels and GCSEs—or O-levels in our old language—as well as tertiary education. It is very important to give them the best opportunity once they depart into civilian street.

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Veterans: Education (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: My right hon. Friend is absolutely right. As the Secretary of State said, one of the advantages of having an armed force is that personnel provide such important skill sets while serving, but they can all be translated back into civilian street. It is important that we make people and society in general aware of the skill sets that are available—grip, tenacity, leadership and...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Mental Health Provision (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: We can be proud of the changes we have introduced through the armed forces mental health and wellbeing strategy—which I inherited when I came into this job from my predecessor as armed forces Minister. Of all the things we have been involved in, we can be particularly proud of changing the stigma associated with mental health issues in the armed forces, getting more people to talk about it...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Mental Health Provision (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: The challenge we faced was that people were reluctant to come forward. They thought that if they put their hand up and said there was something wrong with their mind, that would somehow impact on their ability to be promoted or hold them back in some way. They would keep their problems to themselves, which would then incubate and eventually they would have to quit the very thing they loved:...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Mental Health Provision (8 Jul 2019)

Tobias Ellwood: I am really pleased that the hon. Lady has put this in context because a myth is perpetuated that those who join the armed forces will be affected by mental challenges, but she is right that there are other challenges that we face, not least with alcoholism. We work closely with a number of charities, and we are also doing work as part of the transition services so that people are aware of...


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