Organizations representing Canada’s veterans say the government’s announcement of the long-awaited lifelong disability pensions has failed to live up to the Liberal’s election promise.

Veterans Affairs Minister Seamus O’Regan unveiled the new pensions in December, but the National Council of Veteran Associations and the War Amps of Canada are contending that they’ll have limited applicability to a majority of disabled veterans.

“Although, as per usual, the devil remains in the details as to the applicability of these new provisions to individual veterans, it is relatively clear that certain seriously disabled veterans and their survivors will benefit from the minister’s announcement in that they may qualify for enhanced levels of compensation pursuant to the new benefits proposed for the New Veterans Charter,” said Brian Forbes, executive chairman of the War Amps and chairman of National Council of Veteran Associations, in a press release.

Read: Liberals’ pension plan for disabled veterans won’t take effect until 2019

“However, the greater majority of disabled veterans will not be materially impacted by the minister’s announcement in that the new benefits under the proposed legislative amendments will have limited applicability — thus the financial disparity between the Pension Act and the New Veterans Charter will continue for this significant cohort of disabled veterans in Canada.”

The veterans’ organizations say the new pension fails to satisfy the priority concerns of the veterans’ community in relation to resolving the disparity between the financial compensation available under the Pension Act and the New Veterans Charter.

“It is totally unacceptable that we continue to have veterans’ legislation in Canada which provides a significantly higher level of compensation to a veteran who was injured prior to 2006 (date of the enactment of the New Veterans Charter) when compared to a veteran who was injured post-2006. If applied to the Afghan conflict, we have veterans in the same war with totally different pension benefit results,” said Forbes.

“If the ‘one veteran — one standard’ philosophy advocated by Veterans Affairs Canada has any meaning, this glaring disparity between the Pension Act and New Veterans Charter benefits for the greater majority of disabled veterans required that the minister seize the moment and satisfy the financial needs of Canadian veterans and their dependants,” he added. 

Read: Confusion, frustration greet Liberals’ pension plan for disabled veterans

Copyright © 2019 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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CJ:

No wonder, PM Trudeau is more right wing than Harper was.
He turned Canada into a Left Wing Fascist Empire.
I have worked for 40 yrs here, and the average Syrian refugee is better treated than me.
Best country in the world , eh?

Sunday, January 07 at 5:05 pm | Reply

Chas:

I tend to be skeptical of people whose opening protest about an issue is delivered with ad hominem insults and obfuscatory rhetoric, and choosing to ignore it (them), up to now I figured that clear thinking people in Ottawa would finally bring some element of logic and equity to the VA pension issue.

This latest round of changes being intended to do just that, but clearly not placating the more level-headed VA commentators, I figured it was time to educate myself about what it is exactly that continues to irk our wounded veterans.

I think that what is at play here is a manifestation of the broader malaise that is influencing our political system in this country, which is that people with sophisticated administrative and business skills have simply stayed away from political life these past two decades. Can’t say that I blame them, but until someone who has some kind of meaningful background in pension plan design and scenario testing (of the various change cases), we will continue to mire ourselves in VA pension never-never land.

Did Mr. O’Regan, certainly a well intentioned individual, no doubt, ever think of consulting Bill Morneau about these changes? If he did, and Mr. Morneau opined, “ya, give it a whirl, Seamus, “, the problem of non-participation his being compounded by people signing up, who on paper, may have the business creds., but in fact, don’t.

Monday, January 08 at 1:39 pm | Reply

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