– New report calls on Sadiq Khan to help some of the capital’s 5,360 affected veterans
– Loan-scheme could ease access to highly-trained dogs
– Canines act as effective alternatives to long-term drug therapies
The Mayor of London could support some of the capital’s 5,360 armed forces veterans suffering from PTSD by providing loans for life-changing therapeutic dogs, according to a new report.
‘Paws for Support’, by London Assembly Member Shaun Bailey, calls on the Mayor to use cash reserves and corporate sponsorship to set up an interest-free loan scheme that could provide the capital’s most vulnerable veterans with the trained pets.
The intelligent canines, which help in a similar way to guide dogs, provide reassuring personal assistance to PTSD sufferers and can even wake a sufferer up during recurring nightmares – a common symptom of the illness.
200 of the Capital’s homeless veterans have been helped off the streets in the past year, thanks to funding from the Mayor of London.
The 300k cash was agreed following costed proposals by GLA Conservatives Budget spokesman Gareth Bacon.
So far in 2013/14, an estimated £236k has been spent on helping homeless veterans into temporary hostels, long term supported accommodation as well as employment and training.
“Sadly, there are people returning home from military service who are suffering from a range of social problems including homelessness, and we owe it to them to help them get back on their feet, lead an independent life and integrate in society. I’m pleased to say, that after consistent campaigning, I managed to secure £300k from the Mayor to help homeless veterans. This cash is already making a difference in their lives, indeed in the past year 200 veterans have been helped with treatment, temporary hostel accommodation and long term supported accommodation, as well as training and employment opportunities. But our work cannot stop here. Charity Veterans Aid has seen 447 homeless veterans approach their drop-in service between April and December 2013. I will now be working closely with the Mayor to make sure this funding continues in future years and to bolster the training and employment opportunities available for homeless veterans to help prevent homelessness in the future.”
Londonwide Assembly Member, Gareth Bacon, has today welcomed the Mayor of London’s announcement that £300,000 of City Hall’s rough sleeping budget will be committed to helping homeless individuals in London with a UK armed forces background. This follows the issue being raised by Gareth Bacon in his proposed alternative budget earlier this month.
Mr Bacon said, “I am thrilled that the Mayor has taken on board this important issue and that action will be taken in the coming year to help some of the most vulnerable people in London. The fact that any individuals who have served for our country end up sleeping rough is an injustice and I hope that City Hall programmes can work towards righting this wrong.”
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