Defence Minister Ron Mark has welcomed the news that Her Majesty The Queen has approved a range of changes to the New Zealand Defence Force long service awards system.
“A fairer system has been developed to recognise the vital contribution Regular Force and Reserve Force military personnel make by serving the New Zealand Government and the public,” said Ron Mark.
“The changes will resolve a range of legitimate grievances held by both serving and ex-serving personnel, relating to inconsistencies in the eligibility criteria between the various awards.
“The eligibility criteria changes will immediately qualify about 650 current military personnel for their first long service award, and entitle more than 1700 other current military personnel to a clasp to a long service award they have already received.”
Up to 4000 ex-Service persons will also now qualify for a long service award and/or clasp(s).
“Previously, the service of many former military members could not be recognised and honoured by means of a long service award, but now they will be able to show that they have served their country in uniform,” said Ron Mark.
“Our Defence Force recognises and rewards excellence. It is only right that we celebrate these achievements and that military personnel are recognised for the contribution they make to benefit New Zealand.”
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