Warwickshire County Council welcomes Census change to include Armed Forces community

The 2021 Census will include a question about serving in the Armed Forces
The 2021 Census will include a question about serving in the Armed ForcesThe 2021 Census will include a question about serving in the Armed Forces
The 2021 Census will include a question about serving in the Armed Forces

For the first time in the history of the Census, there will be a question on service in the Armed Forces following a campaign led by The Royal British Legion and Poppy Scotland.

Warwickshire County Council has said it is 'delighted' that the Government has announced the 2021 Census will now include a question to provide information on whether someone has served in HM Armed Forces, following legislation passed last month.

The decision to include the question on the 2021 census will provide the Legion, as well as public bodies, local authorities, and other military charities with information to ensure they can best meet the needs of serving personnel, veterans and their families.

It has been estimated that there are 2.4 million veterans currently living in Great Britain, who make up part of a wider ex-Service community which includes their spouses, partners, dependent children and widow(er)s.

However, little is currently known about the exact numbers, location and needs of this significant group.

Cllr Bob Stevens, chair of the Coventry Solihull and Warwickshire Armed Forces Partnership, said: “Having a better understanding of the profile and needs of veterans in Warwickshire is a key part of making sure our services are tailored for serving personnel, veterans and their families.

"I welcome this historic change to include a question on the Armed Forces to the 2021 Census.”

Charles Byrne, Director-General of The Royal British Legion, said: "This is an extremely proud moment for the Legion.

"After leading a successful campaign, the fact that a military question will be in the 2021 Census will significantly improve our understanding of the Armed Forces community which up until now has been very limited.

"It will ensure that we, along with other charities and service providers, can deliver the best service possible to them when and where it is needed most."

Warwickshire County Council has played a key role in establishing an Armed Forces Covenant for Coventry, Solihull and Warwickshire.

The Covenant is a pledge, taken by public and private sector organisations, that together they acknowledge and understand that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, should be treated with fairness and respect in the communities, economy and society that they serve with their lives.

For more information about the support that Warwickshire County Council provide to the armed forces, go to:: https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/armedforces