Mr Redwood’s contribution to the debate on the Armed Forces (Service Complaints and Financial Assistance) Bill, 2 February 2015

Mr John Redwood (Wokingham) (Con): Will the Minister ensure that other Government Departments fully participate in enforcing the covenant? I have a case of a couple who have had to move twice recently to meet the husband’s requirements in the armed services. The wife is a nurse. She was on maternity leave. There was a delay in getting a job at a new hospital in the new place they were going to. The Government are now demanding all the maternity pay back because she was a few days out of time. That is not helpful and does not seem to be in the spirit of the covenant.

The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence (Anna Soubry): On the basis of what my right hon. Friend has just said, I would agree. I urge him, and any other hon. Member, to come to see me. I would have no difficulty in taking up whatever case it may be on behalf of a constituent or an hon. Member. I would be happy to do that. He makes a good point. It is imperative that we work across government. I am pleased that that includes working with local authorities.