Thank you very much to everyone who either responded to our surveys or got in touch direct in 2016. Survey responses were up 70% on 2015; visits to our website increased by 15%; social media contacts just exploded and over 800 issues were handled by the Evidence Team, some simple and some really complicated. So we hope that, as more people know about us and understand what we can do, that the influence we can bring to bear will grow as well.

We were able to use your evidence to help develop and influence policy – for example, on childcare, on the MOD’s Families Strategy and on the Future Accommodation Model –and to tell the RAF,MOD and government about what issues you have and what concerns you most of all –for example on accommodation, on single living and on the condition of the infrastructure at some units. We met with the Chief Executive of the DIO,senior management at


CarillionAmey and staff at many government departments, as well local authorities to talk to them about you and the unique challenges you sometimes face. We worked with the Devolved Administrations, NHS England and many other organisations involved in supporting you. We also helped to achieve some notable successes under the banner of the Armed Forces Covenant, with removal of disadvantage –for example on suspending mobile phone contracts when posted overseas, waiving cancellation fees and protecting No Claims Bonuses on car insurance premiums and on avoiding having to switch to buy to let mortgages when renting out your home. It might not seem like it to some of you some of the time but we are constantly struck by how many of these organisations and their staff will fall over backwards to help when they can –you enjoy tremendous support ‘out there’.

We are working hard to build on these achievements during 2017 and we

are constantly reviewing what we do and how we do it. This year will see the introduction of the RAF FF App, a revised website and specific work on families in transition and those living outside the wire, be they in their home or in off-base SFA. We will keep providing an outlet for your collective voices and we’ll keep pressing for changes for the better where we can. Obviously,wecan’t secure a20% pay rise for you nor double the defence budget –much as we’d like to. But where we can help to make apositive difference, even in asmall way,we’ll do our best. And whilst each success on its own might seem asmall thing, collectively we hope they make a genuine, positive difference to the lives of serving RAF personnel and families. 

4 Envoy

Spring 2017

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