Royal British Legion Urges Veterans Affected by the LGBT Ban to Claim Support

  • 24 years since the lifting of the military LGBT ban, the Royal British Legion is urging affected veterans to now apply for non-financial restorative measures and express interest in the upcoming financial award scheme
  • The charity remains concerned about the imposition of a cap on compensation payouts

Today, 12 January, marks twenty-four years since the Government lifted its ban on LGBT personnel serving in the British Armed Forces.

Many of those who stepped-up to serve prior to 2000, experienced criminalisation, loss of earnings and pensions, and abuse because of their sexuality.

A review into the ban completed by Lord Etherton last year, recommended to the Government that a scheme be set-up to compensate military personnel who were affected.

Non-financial restorative measures are now available, and the Royal British Legion is urging LGBT veterans affected by the ban to visit the Ministry of Defence website and apply for these, as well express an interest in the financial award scheme, which is due to open later this year.

Non-financial restorative measures include a letter of apology from Service Chief of Staff, replacement beret or cap badge and a written reproduction of the Prime Minister’s public apology.

Lord Etherton’s 2023 LGBT Veterans Independent Review made 49 recommendations, all of which have been accepted by the Government.

The Royal British Legion backs the recommendations; however, it is concerned by the inclusion of a £50 million cap to the total amount of compensation paid.

Without knowing how many people have been affected by the ban, setting a limit on financial awards could mean veterans miss out on payments that truly reflect their losses.

It is hoped that applications for the non-financial restorative measures will help provide a clearer indication of veteran losses and encourage the Government to scrap the cap.

Royal British Legion Interim Director General, Antony Baines, said:

“The anniversary of the lifting of the cruel and destructive ban is a timely reminder of the sacrifices made and indignities experienced by LGBT service personnel. We owe it to them to recognise the struggles they face through no fault of their own and compensate them properly for the harms they endure.”

To register interest for financial award and apply for further support, services and non-financial restorative measures, please visit: Restorative Measures application and registration of interest – for anyone impacted by the Ban (

The Royal British Legion is available to support affected LGBT veterans. Please contact: 0808 802 8080.

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