Viasat signs UK Armed Forces Covenant pledging commitment to military community
Viasat UK Ltd., a subsidiary of global communications company Viasat Inc. has announced that it has affirmed its commitment to supporting UK military personnel, reservists, veterans and their families by signing the UK Armed Forces Covenant. The Armed Forces Covenant is a commitment made by organisations of all types to provide support for members of the armed forces community through employment, education, financial assistance or access to critical services.
The commitment further deepens Viasat’s longstanding relationship with the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD). In 2021, the Company opened a new state-of-the-art facility featuring a Network Operations Centre (NOC) and Cyber Security Operations Centre (CSOC) in Aldershot, Hampshire. The centres will support sovereign operations and capabilities for the UK government and MoD, as well as defend against increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks from a growing number of adversaries. The facility is part of a larger investment in the UK prosperity and sovereignty agenda, which includes a planned £300m investment to support the launch and operation of the ViaSat-3 global satellite constellation over Europe, Middle East and Africa.
The MoD also recognised Viasat with a Bronze Award under the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS). The Defence ERS encourages employers to pledge support for defence and inspire other organizations to do the same. It recognises organisations’ commitments to the armed forces community and alignment of company values with the Armed Forces Covenant.
Viasat’s Vice Chairman Rick Baldridge attended the in-person signing of the Covenant at the company’s Aldershot offices.
“We are very proud to sign the Armed Forces Covenant which is in keeping with the core culture of our company,” said Baldridge. “With hundreds of veterans and military family members working in our offices around the world, the armed forces community is an indispensable part of our workforce. We are looking forward to supporting UK service members and their families with new employment opportunities and other support programs.”
Leo Docherty, Member of Parliament (MP) for Aldershot, joined in applauding Viasat’s signing of the Covenant and broader commitments in the UK.
“I’m delighted that Viasat UK is showing its support for our service personnel by raising the flag and signing the Armed Forces Covenant. As someone with a military background, I am delighted to see Viasat UK extend its commitment to our Armed Forces, veterans and Reserves - and their families - right across the UK,” said Mr. Docherty. “Offering meaningful employment options and support for those who are transitioning from the military to civilian life means their talents are maximised in their positive contribution to the business community."
Viasat has a long history of supporting military veterans. The Armed Forces Covenant and Bronze Award are further examples of this continued commitment to veterans and military families everywhere through employment opportunities, career development and transition workshops. Last year, the U.S. Department of Labor gave Viasat a 2021 HIRE Vets Medallion Award, which recognises investment in recruiting and retaining veterans, as well as offering veteran-specific skills development and leadership programs. Viasat was also named a top employer of veterans by Military Times’ 2021 Best for Vets: Employers List.
Mr. Docherty continued, “The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise by the nation to ensure the fair treatment of those who are serving, as well as veterans and their families. I’m delighted to see even more organisations - including Viasat UK, headquartered in my constituency of Aldershot - sign up to this pledge."
The signing of the Armed Forces Covenant follows Viasat and Inmarsat’s recently announced agreement with the UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) as part of the proposed combination of the two companies. This agreement includes binding commitments to expand numbers of highly-skilled jobs in key areas and research & development investment that will support the UK’s National Space Strategy.