A city housing group has made a pledge to support veterans.
The Gentoo Group has created its own Corporate Covenant in another step towards improving services for returning service personnel.
The covenant is a voluntary pledge from businesses and charitable organisations who wish to demonstrate their continued commitment to the armed forces community.
Gentoo is leading on a national Armed Forces Housing Pledge, encouraging housing providers to recognise the commitment of returning service personnel and veterans and treat them accordingly.
In another new initiative, Gentoo employees who have served in the forces, have family who are serving or who are or have been a reservist, are invited to join the Gentoo Armed Forces Veterans Group, providing support and advice to customers and staff.
The group is going to work to help other businesses support this agenda in the North East.
Chief Executive, Peter Walls, who is also the Prince of Wales’ ambassador for responsible business in the North East, said: “I am more determined than ever to improve services for the armed forces community.
“In recognising the commitment of our armed forces we need to appreciate not only those who have lost their lives in conflict, but also those who return to us.
“We need to work together to ensure that the people who are our heroes are treated as such.”
Gentoo Group is signatory of Sunderland’s Community Covenant.
Deputy Commander, 4th Infantry Brigade, Mike Butterwick said: “I am delighted by Gentoo’s commitments to our servicemen and women.
“Transition from service life back into the community is a daunting prospect for many of our people.
“Gentoo has been fantastic in understanding those challenges and also recognising that our people bring with them a vast array of skills, technical knowledge and a determined, values based work ethic.
“I am really looking forward to working with Gentoo as we attempt to ensure those who have given so much are properly supported both during their service and beyond.”