Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 17th May 2019.

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Photo of Gareth Thomas Gareth Thomas Party Chair, Co-operative Party

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of the merits of the collection of data on military veterans' interactions with government service providers to help support the specific needs of those veterans; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Tobias Ellwood Tobias Ellwood The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence

It is recognised that better identification of the veteran community within and through data can lead to a greater understanding of their needs, trends and geographical distribution - which in turn will provide a more robust evidence base to inform policy making, enable planning and support service delivery.

The UK-wide Strategy for our Veterans champions the changing needs of the ex-Service community. Since Veterans draw on services from across Governments and Departments, implementation of the strategy will be across the three-sitting governments and across Whitehall Departments.

'Data on the Veteran Community' is one of the cross cutting factors of the Strategy and whilst it recognises that there is some reliable data collected across Government Departments, it can be fragmented, making analysis and prediction of needs difficult. The outcome we want by 2028 is for an enhanced collection across Government to better build an evidence base to identify and address the needs of veterans.

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