Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Abandoned: ex-squaddies in civvy street

Good to see Elfyn Llwyd, Plaid's MP for Meirionnydd Dwyfor, having a say on the scandal of ex-squaddies abandoned by the British establishment in a Panorama special on BBC1 tonight.
As one traumatised ex-soldier from Wales said: "It takes six months to train a civilian to be a soldier, but there's no time given to train a soldier to be a civilian."
Elfyn Llwyd has led a consistent campaign to highlight the impact that the MoD's policy of abandoning former soldiers has on our society. It's estimated that more than 1 in 10 of the prison population are ex-squaddies and many are among those sleeping rough on the streets and suffering from alcohol and substance misuse as well as PTSD.
There's one simple way to reduce the problem of PTSD and other mental health problems future squaddies will face when they're abandoned in civvy street - that's to get them out of Afghanistan as soon as possible and to stop engaging in illegal or unwinnable wars.
Welsh troops make up 11% of the British Army - more than double the proportion of our population. Wales consequently carries a greater burden of returning ex-servicemen struggling to find homes, jobs and deal with the trauma of war.
Elfyn Llwyd is highlighting a very real problem that exists both for the individuals affected, their families and our wider society.

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