90 days from today is Fri, 25 December 2020
9 July 2019
Veterans at risk of spiralling into a life of crime are being helped to turn their lives around through a West Midlands Police support scheme.
The Force set up the WMP Veteran Peer Support Network to help former armed forces personnel whose lives have taken a turn for the worse.
A team of police staff and officers go into prisons, police custody and communities to speak to veterans and their families and help them secure housing, employment and financial help or signposting them to mental health services.
PCs Nick Wolverson and Jaymie Rogers are both ‘Veteran Champions’ who volunteered to take on extra responsibility by joining the Network for its 2017 launch.
Nick − now part of the Birmingham offender management team − served with the Grenadier Guards during the Gulf War, while Birmingham neighbourhood officer Jaymie’s father was in the Army and she spent time growing up overseas.
They understand the difficulties some may have in re-adjusting following military service and can assist in tackling issues which drive veterans towards strife.
One ex-soldier who Nick and Jaymie worked with was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder which had left him estranged from his mother, partner and child. He was moved to tears when the officers’ hard work saw his mother attend court to support him.
The pair have since gone on to receive Diamond Awards from the Force for their ongoing professionalism and efforts to help others.
Inspector Johanna Comer, who set up and co-ordinates the network, is hoping to recruit more people to reach out to veterans who want help to transform their behaviour.