On a visit to HMS Ark Royal, Prime Minister David Cameron has pledged his support for the Armed Forces by announcing that the military covenant will be given the force of law in forthcoming Armed Forces legislation.
From an article on the official Ministry of Defence website:
Mr Cameron explained that the covenant, the state's responsibility to its Armed Forces, will be rewritten and enshrined in law for the first time.
The covenant is an informal understanding of the state's duty of care to its Armed Forces. Until now, it has been regarded as an obligation rather than a firm rule set out in legislation.
Yesterday, Mr Cameron declared that the new Government will underline its commitment to the Armed Forces by putting it into law.
A new covenant - which will include rights to prioritised NHS treatment, decent housing and education for Service families' children - is to be given legal force in a new Armed Services Bill.
Addressing sailors, Marines and airmen aboard Ark Royal, Mr Cameron said:
"It's time for us to rewrite the military covenant to make sure we are doing everything we can.
"Whether it's the schools you send your children to, whether it's the healthcare that you expect, whether it's the fact that there should be a decent military ward for anyone who gets injured.
"I want all these things refreshed and renewed and written down in a new military covenant that's written into the law of the land."
- Full MoD article: Military covenant to be enshrined in law