Showing posts with label Scotland. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Scotland. Show all posts

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Scots wounded war heroes had been failed by the Government

Ray of hope as Scots armed forces veterans wait two years for a mental health plan

Herald Scotland
By Martin Williams
Senior News Reporter
May 8, 2020
Earlier this week the military support group All Call Signs rescued five suicidal veterans during lockdown and issued a warning that more lives are at risk.
Ray of hope as Scots armed forces veterans wait two years for a mental health plan
ARMED forces veterans are facing a threat from an enemy they cannot see.

That threat is mental illness - and can deal a fatal blow long after a soldier has left the theatre of war and the military.

While Scottish armed forces veterans have waited over two years for a recommended mental health plan after concerns over suicides - a Scottish university is now playing a key role in a new UK-wide study on the psychological health and wellbeing of families of ex-service men and women.

Two years ago, a report by Eric Fraser, the first Scottish veterans commissioner revealed Scots wounded war heroes had been failed by the Government and a covenant to protect them was “meaningless”.
read it here

Monday, November 12, 2018

Arthur Roberts, Scottish WWI Black Soldier Unforgotten Now

Jackie Kay on Arthur Roberts: the black Scottish first world war soldier who felt forgotten

The Guardian
Jackie Kay
November 11, 2018

In 2004, Roberts’s wartime diaries were discovered in a Glasgow attic. A century after he went to war, Scotland’s makar remembers his contribution
It is one thing to make sacrifices; it is quite another thing to become the victim of a kind of national amnesia. Reading Arthur’s diaries and looking at his photographs, I felt compelled to save his face, commit him to memory.
Arthur Roberts, left, with two soldiers. Photograph: Hopscotch Films
Arthur Roberts was a black Scottish soldier who survived the first world war and ended his days in an old people’s home in Glasgow. His name would have been lost to us were it not for a remarkable sequence of events. In the autumn of 2004 a young couple found his diaries, letters and photographs in a house they had bought in the city a few years earlier. The diaries were written over the course of a single year: 1917. In his diary, he detailed his experiences of war and loss, of heavy shelling, blood-covered rations, of comrades he witnessed dying. Arthur, who had died in 1982, was miraculously returned, his voice brought back to life.

There were no black troops included in the Peace March of July 1919, a victory parade held in London to mark the end of the war. Allison O’Neill, one of the care workers in the home where Arthur spent the last of his days, said that he had felt forgotten on Remembrance Sundays. He would go and sit in his room and not watch the ceremonies on television. Perhaps he had tired of the “glory of war” and the “old lies”, and perhaps the wound cut deeper.
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Sunday, January 28, 2018

Scotland PTSD Veterans Feel Neglected Too

Insight: Neglect of Forces veterans continues to end in tragedy
The Scotsman
Dani Garavelli
January 28, 2018

"There is more than one way to self-destruct, of course. Some people kill themselves in a single act, others in installments. Their sense of purpose and self-worth evaporates; they stop caring whether they live or die until, eventually, they are beyond reach."
Veteran Steven Wyllie outside the Reid Mcewan activity centre. Picture: John Devlin

Former Army sergeant Calum MacLeod was in an Irish American bar in Germany when he suffered the flashback that forced him to face up to his post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). With hindsight, he accepts he had been struggling for a long time.

Ever since he had been attacked while serving with the King’s Own Scottish Borderers in Northern Ireland in 1992, he had suffered nightmares, which he countered with heavy drinking. Back then, a crowd of youths had cornered him in an alleyway, hit him over the head with a concrete slab and stolen his gun. When he regained consciousness in a hospital in Belfast, he was told one of the youths had pointed the weapon at his head and fired, but the mechanism had jammed, so he survived.

Hearing U2’s Sunday Bloody Sunday on the jukebox in Heidelberg more than a decade later triggered a violent outburst. “One of the Yanks had put it on and I just lost it,” says MacLeod. “My best friend was with me. He said: ‘Your eyes just changed; you were hyper-aroused.’ He forced me into a taxi. I was lashing out, trying to escape. The song, the sounds, the crowd: I really thought I was back in the Province.” 

MacLeod, from Hamilton, ended up in a psychiatric hospital where a colonel told him he was suffering from one of the worst cases of PTSD he had ever seen. Posted back to the UK and unable to cope with confined spaces, he pioneered a successful scheme to help would-be Army recruits reach the required level of fitness. But, in 2011, after 23 years of service, he decided it was finally time to call it a day.
“I think I am one of the lucky ones and that’s largely because my family got me through. Some of the veterans come out and there’s no-one there for them. In the last 18 months, I have been to seven funerals: all suicides.” Calum MacLeod
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Saturday, July 29, 2017

UK Amputee Soldier Can't Get Treated...Because He's Scottish?

Soldier who lost both legs in Afghanistan can't receive hospital treatment in England 'because he's Scottish'

‘I am sitting here without my legs because I fought for this country’ 
The Independent 
Narjas Zatat 
July 28, 2017 

A Scottish soldier who lost both his legs while serving for the British Army in Afghanistan has been told he can no longer continue to receive specialist treatment in England. 

Lance Corporal Callum Brown said staff at the Queen Elizabeth Birmingham Trust hospital, which houses experts in amputee and veteran care, said NHS England could no longer provide funding. 

The 28-year-old, from the west coast Scottish town of Ayr, was injured by a bomb blast during a tour of duty in Afghanistan in 2011 and airlifted home. 
read more here

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Missing Veteran Alert: Scotland Veteran Paul Ellis

An Iraq War veteran who was reported missing has been found.

Family's desperate plea over missing Iraq war veteran
STV News Scotland
Chris Foote
29 mins ago

The family of a missing Iraq war veteran and PTSD-sufferer say they are "desperate to get him home".
Paul Ellis is believed to have travelled from Glasgow to Edinburgh by train on Saturday afternoon.

He arrived at Waverley station at around 2.35pm and then boarded a second train headed to London, although it is unclear whether he arrived in the capital.

The family of the 53-year-old, who served two tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan with the Royal Navy Reserve, are concerned for his welfare.

Speaking to STV News, they said: "Paul's family loves him so much and we're desperate to get him home. We just want to know that he's okay."
read more here

Thursday, August 20, 2015

UK: Iraq War Veteran Told to Take Off Veterans Charity Shirt?

Hotel staff tell Iraq war veteran to remove his Union Jack themed Help for Heroes t-shirt in case it 'offends other guests'
Daily Mail
PUBLISHED: 03:42 EST, 20 August 2015
Iraq war veteran Andrew Thomas told to take off charity shirt
Tudor Hotel, in Airdrie, Scotland, said it breached 'no team colours' policy
The 33-year-old former soldier was then refused orange juice he ordered
The hotel has since apologized unreservedly for the 'misunderstanding'
The hotel has since issued an apology and said it would make a 'substantial' donation to the charity.
A war veteran was refused service and forced to remove a Help for Heroes t-shirt in case it 'offended other guests' at a hotel.

Andrew Thomas, who served in Iraq, was told to take off the Union Jack-themed shirt by a bar worker at the Tudor Hotel, in Airdrie, Scotland, as it breached their 'no team colours' policy.

The 33-year-old from Essex, who was visiting the hotel during a work trip, was refused an orange juice while he was still wearing the charity top.
read more here

Monday, August 18, 2014

Fighting Combat PTSD in Scotland

Fighting on the frontline: PTSD cases surge across Scotland
By Laura Piper
18 August 2014
Lance Corporal John Templeton was one soldier who was referred to the charity by his GP after suffering a breakdown years after he had left the army.

"I had been suppressing it for years, self-medicating through alcohol misuse," he said. "I think I used drink to keep the demons away at and the lads just had a drink and – you know that phrase 'just soldier on' – well, that’s what we did.

“I now know I should have got help a lot earlier. If I had maybe I wouldn’t have lost so much."

It has been described as the invisible scar of war; the bomb waiting to explode when a soldier returns home.

For men and women returning from conflict, post-traumatic stress disorder can be a battle they never expected to fight.

In the military there is a deep-rooted ethos that 'no man gets left behind' with soldiers committed to risking all to protect those they fight alongside.

In Scotland, there are two men carrying this belief on long after the call to duty has been answered.
As one of only two regional officers for Combat Stress in Scotland, Lappin has to see the on-going turmoil in the eyes of veterans every single day.

"If you were to draw a line down Scotland I would be on the West and Jim Lawrence the East," said Lappin.

Together, the two men travel door to door across the country, meeting veterans in their own home in order to help them take the first step to confronting their ongoing battles.

"When I started here we were getting an average of 60 new referrals a year. Now, I'd say that's up to 130, partly because of the recent conflict in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"But as much as we see veterans from Iraq we see many, if not more, from the Falklands and Northern Ireland. And the numbers are rising."
read more here

Monday, December 2, 2013

Glasgow helicopter crash: RAF veteran died trying to prevent a greater disaster

Glasgow helicopter crash: RAF veteran died trying to prevent a greater disaster
HERO pilot Captain Dave Traill has been praised for trying to bring the stricken helicopter down in a “controlled” crash.
Express UK
Tom Martin
December 2, 2013

The former RAF flight lieutenant died trying to prevent an greater disaster, aviation experts believe.

The rotor blades were not turning – suggesting a catastrophic engine failure – and Cpt Traill seemed to be attempting an emergency landing on the flat roof of Clutha Vaults pub.

Struan Johnston, director of Caledonian Aviation, said: “The pilot would have done everything to try to land the aircraft safely. He nearly pulled it off.”

Cpt Traill, who worked for Bond Air Services, was a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan and had served in both Gulf Wars. He lived in Lochwinnoch, Renfrewshire, with his girlfriend Lucy. His cousin, Toni Lawson, said: “It’s very upsetting, but if his actions saved the lives of others we are very proud of him.”

Police Scotland confirmed the identities of the officers who died as PC Kirsty Nelis and PC Tony Collins, of the Operational Support Division.
read more here

Monday, September 2, 2013

Six Scottish soldiers arrested for beating off duty NYPD officer

UK soldiers suspected of beating NYC cop outside bar
By Alexander Smith
NBC News contributor September 2, 2013

An off-duty New York police officer was allegedly assaulted and robbed outside a Manhattan bar by six soldiers from a Scottish regiment who were in town on a rugby tour, police said Monday.

One of the soldiers, of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, is said to have snatched the 21-year-old officer's cell phone while the other five are suspected of assault.

A friend of the officer was also alleged assaulted.

"A verbal confrontation escalated into a physical confrontation," a New York Police Department said.

"Words were said and the situation became aggressive.

"Somebody tried to de-escalate things but then the fight started. It is not clear what was said between the men.
read more here

Saturday, July 25, 2009

220,000 treated for post-traumatic stress in Scotland

Scotland's Lawyers getting carried away with PTSD claims or is there something else going on?

220,000 treated for post-traumatic stress

26 July 2009
By David Leask
MORE people are being treated for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) than are serving in Britain's armed forces, it emerged last night.

The UK Government said 220,000 individuals seek help for the condition.

The revelation, uncovered by the BBC, comes as lawyers increasingly cite PTSD when trying to sue on behalf of people who have endured even the most minor accident, such as a ADVERTISEMENTlow-speed car crash or "shunt".

Scotland's leading expert in the condition last night said the diagnosis of PTSD had become far too loose, allowing lawyers to capitalise.
read more here
220,000 treated for post-traumatic stress

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Scotland:Woman's body found 5 years after she died in apartment

Call for more vigilance after elderly woman lay dead in flat for 5 years

Published Date: 04 July 2009
AN ELDERLY woman lay dead in her tenement flat for five years before her body was found, it has emerged.

Last night, politicians and charities said the case showed the need for a more co-ordinated approach to monitoring the elderly to prevent similar cases.

The body of Isabella Purves, a "friendly and independent" woman, who would have been 90 this year, was discovered in her home in Rodney Street, Edinburgh, earlier this week.

A spokesman for Age Concern Scotland and Help the Aged Scotland said: "It is not right in any way to have someone lying dead for five years.
go here for more

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Scotland:Veterans’ charity at centre of two mental health initiatives

Veterans’ charity at centre of two mental health initiatives
Sunday Herald - Glasgow,Scotland,UK
By Rachelle Money
Ex-services personnel to benefit from projects led by Combat Stress
SCOTLAND IS leading the way in its treatment of war veterans with the announcement of two projects that will help those who continue to suffer from mental health problems after they leave the armed forces.

An Edinburgh-based pilot scheme, aimed at providing a one-stop shop for veterans, will launch in the new year. Another community-based outreach project looks set to help ex-servicemen and women across the country from April.

The First Point scheme in the capital will be delivered by NHS Lothian's Traumatic Stress Centre (formerly known as the Rivers Centre) and will be funded by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and the NHS. It will be run in conjunction with the charity Combat Stress, which runs the only Scottish-based treatment centre, in Ayrshire. A Combat Stress welfare officer will visit the project once a week and veteran mentors will also offer support to those using the service.
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Sunday, August 24, 2008

Scots men forced to suffer in silence from domestic abuse

Scots men forced to suffer in silence from domestic abuse

Published Date: 25 August 2008
By Lindsay McIntosh
SCOTTISH men who are attacked by their violent partners are being left with nowhere to turn, failed by an under-resourced system, victims and campaigners have told The Scotsman.

There is no tailored facility for male victims of domestic abuse north of the Border, and many are instead being shunted to unsuitable services.

And the Scottish Government insists that general counselling services, such as Victim Support, are enough – even though female sufferers have bespoke services.

Now a new organisation, Men's Aid Scotland, is seeking charitable status to secure funding to provide the counselling and advice services which currently do not exist.

The organiser, Jackie Walls, said: "We are trying to raise the profile but we are finding it very difficult to get recognition. They see women as always being the victims, never the perpetrator.

"It is totally unreported. We are trying to flag this up and say 'please see there is a need for services'. We need to do a pilot project and get statistics."
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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Israel Defense does not take care of troops wounded by PTSD

Israel Defense does not take care of troops wounded by PTSD
Last update - 23:34 18/12/2007

Shell-shocked troops overlooked by gov't recognized in new law

By Yuval Azoulay, Haaretz Correspondent

Tags: Israel, IDF

An amendment passed Tuesday will enable shell-shocked Israel Defense Forces troops to receive recognition and stipends as disabled veterans from the Defense Ministry, despite prior recognition as disabled by the National Insurance Institute.

MK Zahava Gal-On (Meretz) advanced the amendment, which is to the law on disabled soldiers.

Gal-On said that soldiers experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder frequently failed in proving to the Defense Ministry's pensions officer the connection between their suffering and their army service. As such, they were discounted from benefits mandated by the law on disabled soldiers.
go here for the rest

Canada does not take care of their troops with PTSD

England, Scotland, Australia, the list goes on but at the top of the list of the nations not taking care of their veterans with PTSD is America. Why? Because they have the most vetearns needing to be taken care of and failing them the worst.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Scotland Community schemes to help veterans with PTSD

Community schemes to help veterans with mental health problems
The Herald - Glasgow,Scotland,UK

The UK Government will today announce measures to help Armed Forces' veterans recover from mental health problems caused by their active service.

The move comes just weeks after a review of mental health among the military, which showed veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were suffering a mounting toll of post-traumatic stress, alcoholism and family breakdown.

Derek Twigg, the Veterans Minister, is due to announce six pilot community health schemes, one in Scotland, tailored specifically to help veterans. They will run for two years and, if successful, will be rolled out across the UK.

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Saturday, November 3, 2007

Scotland takes action on treating combat PTSD

NHS enlists expert war trauma doctors
MILITARY doctors will work within the NHS to stop the scandal of war heroes being left to cope on their own with crushing mental health illnesses.

The groundbreaking move by the Ministry of Defence is a major victory for campaigners after doctors slammed the treatment being meted out to ex-soldiers, claiming they were being were being dealt with in the same way as "a postman or a painter".

A treatment scheme will be piloted in Edinburgh under which military psychiatrists will be brought into hospital to ensure the trauma suffered by ex-servicemen is dealt with properly.

Veterans minister Derek Twigg told Scotland on Sunday that he had reached a deal with the Scottish Government to fund the new unit which will be open to all veterans needing help.
go here for the rest

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Scotland Military 26 percent increase in PTSD stirs 50 percent increase in grants

Scarred by battle
They don't have to kill you to take your life away. The words of an ex-serviceman, reported in The Herald last year, eloquently describe how engagement in combat zones can have psychological as well as physical consequences for the armed forces. The psychological impact can be devastating. The ex- serviceman was one of some 1000 post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) cases helped by Combat Stress, the charity that provides residential care for eligible veterans suffering from severe psychological problems. According to the charity, there has been a 26% increase in such cases in the past four years. It warns that it could be swamped by the number of cases unless there are the necessary resources to keep pace with growing demand.

There was recognition, of sorts, of this yesterday when Derek Twigg, the Armed Forces Minister, announced a phased, near-50% increase in residential grants to Combat Stress. The announcement, while welcome, confirms what the charity and other organisations involved in caring for the pyschological casualties of combat have been saying for some time: that they were underfunded by government. Ministers have been accused of breaking the military covenant by not caring for those it puts in harm's way by its policies.

The willingness of Tony Blair, the former Prime Minister, to intervene with force abroad, most notably and misguidedly in Iraq, brought with it its own responsibilities: to care for those whose bodies were broken and minds damaged by front-line duties. Mr Blair failed to live up to these responsibilities as they applied to PTSD, and it is only now that Gordon Brown's government is beginning to accept the scale of these duties. The dismantling of Britain's military medical network began under the Tories in government and continued under Mr Blair, despite the paradox of an aggressive foreign policy being pursued at the same time.
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Deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan involve almost 25% of the British Army each year in rolling, six-month tours of duty, each involving 12,000 soldiers. In both theatres, the enemy are insurgents who can strike at any time and are virtually indistinguishable from local civilians.

Six month tours while our troops are expected to do 15!

Friday, September 21, 2007

PTSD view from Scotland

Mum demands more help for Gulf War vets and ex-soldiers

« Previous « PreviousNext » Next »
View GalleryA CONCERNED mum is calling on the UK Government to give better support to war veterans affected by their time in combat.
Patricia Davis, from Lennoxtown, says her son George suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) since serving in the army.

When he was 17, George joined the Queen's Own Highlanders, serving in Germany, Northern Ireland and Iraq.

He left the forces in the mid-90s after developing a range of symptoms which are commonly referred to as 'Gulf War Syndrome'.

Now 37, and after years of suffering alone, George attends Hollybush House, a veterans' facility in Ayr.

Hollybush House offers residential respite care for those affected by PTSD.

More than 34 people from East Dunbartonshire use the facility annually, benefiting from services such as counselling, massage and relaxation treatments.

The centre, which treats approximately 850 people every year, is a charity funded by organisations such as the Royal British Legion and the Congregational Church of Scotland.

Patricia said: "Hollybush is a wonderful place, but it needs support from the Government.

"My son used to be a fun, kind, caring person - now he is virtually a recluse. It is very sad for all the family.

"The Government is quick to sign these young people up, but they don't support them enough when they are discharged."
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