Reward UK coronavirus heroes risking their lives for us with lifelong 'war pension'

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As the coronavirus crisis begins to bite in the UK, our front-line staff - in the NHS, emergency services, teaching, retail and other essential roles are risking their lives to save our lives. The strain can already be seen on the faces of tearful, exhausted health workers and others.

Suddenly, millions of low-paid and undervalued workers are officially 'essential' - but when the pandemic is over, the so-called 'elites' will revert to type. We must not tolerate that.

When this crisis passes, it simply will not do for the government to make a speech about their heroism and then go back to its habitual cuts, disrespect and destabilisation of these mostly low-paid heroes.

These front-line workers are fighting a war with the virus for us, knowing many of them will get sick and die as a result of their dedication. Those who do not survive will fear that their families will be left in hardship.

When this war is over, they MUST receive not just thanks but LIFELONG support: a 'war pension' to ensure their security and the security of their families - and it must go to the families of those who do not survive the fight, too.

Anything less than this will be a disgrace to our nation and our humanity. Make the UK a place that rewards and values those who really serve this country - and do it now.