Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

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Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by Teentitan on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 11:58

Last week I was honoured to be a keynote speaker at the Army, Navy & Air Force Veterans (ANAVETS) in Canadaís 52nd Biennial Dominion Convention in Penticton, BC. During my visit to the Okanagan Valley, I also hosted a Town Hall in Kelowna on October 6th and a second in Penticton on October 7th. These meetings gave me the opportunity to hear the viewpoints of hundreds of Veterans on a variety of issues. They also allowed me to gauge individual Veteransí reactions to the response of the Government of Canada to the 14 recommendations made by the House of Commons Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs (ACVA) in its unanimous June 2014 Report, The New Veterans Charter: Moving Forward.

My conversations with Veterans confirmed that they, like other Veterans across the country, had high expectations as they awaited the Governmentís response to the ACVA Report. They hoped that after years of study, it would provide details on what improvements to the New Veterans Charter could be expected in coming months. Although there was overall agreement that the response represented forward movement, many echoed my concern with the Governmentís phased approach.

I flagged this concern in my initial assessment of the Governmentís response to the ACVA Report. While all or part of 10 of the Committeeís recommendations are planned to be quickly achieved in phase one within existing authorities and budgets of Veterans Affairs Canada and the Department of National Defence, the implementation of the four recommendations that represent substantive change is being delayed until ďadditional inter-departmental work, budgetary analysis, and coordination with a wide range of federal departments, as well as with the Veterans Ombudsman and Veteransí groupsĒ can be done.

In my October 2nd news release, I both encouraged the Minister of Veterans Affairs to actively engage the President of the Treasury Board and the Minister of Finance and urged the members of the Veteransí community across the country to engage their local Members of Parliament and key Cabinet Ministers on the implementation of the ACVA Report. It is essential that federal decision makers understand the importance and urgency of targeting budgetary funds to address the deficiencies in the New Veterans Charter. It is also essential that these funds be committed in the 2015 Budget. I am ready to work with the Minister and Veterans Affairs Canada do whatever is necessary to achieve this goal. To me, it is a matter of fairness to our Veterans and their families.

Now is the time for Veteransí voices to be heard so that the Government does not waiver on its intent. Veterans and their families represent over a million people across Canada. Donít underestimate the power of your collective voices. You can make a difference. Speak up!

Guy

http://www.ombudsman-veterans.gc.ca/eng/blog/post/275
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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by loggie on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 12:22

What about an on-line petition that specifically spells out what WE all want? Then, as the petition grows, so too may they media coverage.

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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by Guest on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 12:55

wow loogi what we all want? I don't think a lot of peeps want to see something like that. im sure they just want to here what the talking heads want . ya see if ya open up a petition spelling out what all vets want ya just get the crazies like myself and others throwing in crazy stuff like say treating disabled afgan vets infact ALL disabled vets post 2006 the same as those pre 2006 . a lot of these talking heads don't want to here this radicalized crap from us buds.

imagine the notion that all vets be treated equally that's just fracking insane.

don't get me wrong I think it a great idea but what do I know im just another one of the radicals .

from what ive seen any petition that includes equal treatment for vets will garner a great amount of support from vets but im afraid not much from those that say they are their to help vets.

great idea though love it.

propat

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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by loggie on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 16:23

I ACK and respect what you are saying Propat however now that we are officially within one year of an election, more of the Joe Who Cares public might start taking notice. PLUS, now with more then 600 troops off to Kuwait, and with the majority of the public supporting that action, the timing may be right for a new heads up to Joe Who Cares - BEFORE they start seeing someone getting hurt, or worse, over there. Can't you just picture Fantino consoling a grieving widow/widower whose partner unfortunately augured their CF 18 into the ground? That is when, I believe, a brand new story outlining our ongoing "war" underneath that caption, or located somewhere close to it would really hit home.

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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by loggie on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 16:30

Teen, have we ever had a professional lobbyist working on our behalf?

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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by Teentitan on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 16:44

Not to my knowledge. But a lobbyist for this situation would be useless. A lobbyist is paid to sell their goods. What goods to vet's have for a lobbyist?

What we vets need is a Public Relations company. There are so many advocates beating on "their" drums that there are so many we literally nullify each other. The Legion is trying to start focusing the voices by pulling their approval for the NVC from back in 06' and starting a letter writing campaign. The Legion needs to stand high on their podium and garner the media's attention to bring the focus of veteran issues to Joe Public for them to understand.

Joe Public knows the Legion. But the Legion has yet to go "all in". They are still scared to do it with a strong voice. Until they do what they are supposed to do for veterans they are just another lamb trying to be a lion.
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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by Guest on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 17:07

a veterans political action committee would be a great answer. vets voting on mass and in block . this would need both a lobbyist PR guy a money guy and a few more. what will vets bring to the table then???? votes and money the catnip of EVERY politician.

some day boys some day.

propat

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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by Teentitan on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 19:54

Well in my honest opinion and experience the politicians are nothing more then replaceable parts in the VAC machine.

The real problem is the bureaucracy and the bureaucrats that created it, enforce it and absolutely fight tooth and nail to improve it!

There is only one reason why they fight change...job security.

Here's a perfect example. Perishable daily living aids. I will use one of my own recent experiences...my CPAP machine.

I go through cushioned masks and neoprene headgear every 2-3 months. My service provider hates dealing with the paperwork VAC makes them do to get a billing code to get paid. I have to phone make the request, the service provider faxes the request/quote to the appropriate Treatment Authorization Centre. After...insert number of days/weeks/months here...waiting for the billing code. They call me then I go get it.

So instead of the hassle of playing VAC's waiting game I buy it and submit the bill. Now I have been using a CPAP since 1999 and have been a client of VAC since 2000. So it is safe to say I have a life-long need for CPAP equipment.

My recent submittal of my bill for a mask and headgear was denied and returned to me because...and you are going to love this...the Customer Copy with the phrase Total Sale on it was not stamped "Paid in Full". Correct me if I'm wrong here but has anyone ever gotten a Customer Copy WITHOUT paying for it?!?!

So I went back to the store and got the paid in full stamp sent it back and got reimbursed. So my question is this...in the future if I forget to get the paid in full and I just write in paid in full how will VAC know it wasn't me?

Now let's count the number of employees at VAC:
1. secretary that opens the envelope and designates it to the appropriate department
2. the internal courier to take it to destined department
3. the secretary that determines all the required info is in place to be approved for reimbursement
4. the courier that takes it to Blue Cross for them to deposit the money into my account for reimbursement.
5. the accountant that enters the authorization for the banking deposit

But wait my claim was rejected...so steps 1 and 2 happen but then 3 denies it so it has to go to the
4. office manager who then says yes denied
5. back to the secretary to type the denial letter
6. internal courier to take the denial letter to the mail department.

Lot's of people putting their hands and eyes on ONE CLAIM.

Wouldn't this be easier...
"Hey Teentitan is going to need CPAP equipment on a regular basis every year. Why don't we just get the accounting department to put a billing code on his VAC file number so the service provider can call the NCCN to get the billing number? And to keep it in check we will apply a new billing code every year. You know like we used to do with the VIP?"

What 2/3 people to do a billing code every year?

Like I said JOB SECURITY!!!
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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by Guest on Mon 20 Oct 2014, 20:26

yup a problem for sure maybe we need Mulroney back he cleaned out a bunch of the been counters bureaucrats and bull crapers out of the tax department and customs maybe he could do the same with DVA . anyway that is beside the point we need to change legislation and the bureaucrats don't get to vote in the house only the MOP,s we elect do .

so we need to find a way to get commitments from politician's and then find a way to get those politician's elected.

propats #1 rule of politics

votes equals money

money equals votes

you find a way to offer these things up to politicians come election time they will be lined up at the door to give you that commitment .

a vets political wing can do just that . you can call it a PAC a party ore whatever have you it can do that job.

propat

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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by loggie on Tue 21 Oct 2014, 10:47

Teen I have a number of similar stories. I wear a knee brace and because I sweat a lot the cushion pads get worn down to nothing very quickly. I have had the brace ever since my knee injury ('95) and every year I have to apply to get replacements. This year I was told no there should be no need for new ones! HUH? Who the hell are you to say NO when you have no clue as to why. AND I have been getting them since 1995!!! After several calls, a letter to my MP and help from my CM (total time 3 mos) I was authorized new ones. BUT in the interim I could not even wear my brace as it chaffed the hell out of my leg. And as of yesterday I have another one. My request for orthotics was denied because my provider did not write on the form who the "Prescriber and Provider" were. To be totally honest she did not write it on the form. What she did do was ATTACH the actual prescription PLUS a letter from the Provider further outlining my requirement. AND I have been getting orthotics due to my pensioned knee since 1999!!!! So now I have another fight on my hands.
But going back to your suggestion about letter writing, you know the old saying, everybody's on board until there is work to be done? In this case the vets would probably all help out if there was an easy way to do it. So instead of a petition what about some sort of form letter that all they have to do is sign and then send to their MP?

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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by Teentitan on Tue 21 Oct 2014, 11:02

Form letters in my opinion are the same as a petition. They get stacked in the "pile" and left to collect dust.

Personal stories is what they cannot ignore as each is different and shows how screwed up the system is.
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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by pinger on Tue 21 Oct 2014, 18:32

Just some thoughtsÖ

Guy wroteÖ

ď Donít underestimate the power of your collective voices. You can make a difference. Speak up! ď

andÖ ď engage their (meaning our) local Members of Parliament and key Cabinet Ministers on the implementation of the ACVA Report. Ē

Hold them to account and task (my words).

Collective voices stood out to me, like strength in numbers. However, I believe the overall veteran community is pretty fractured and scattered. With all the veterans groups, non-profits, websites, forums, agendas, 3rd partys, etc. if we ever consolidate and organize into one united true front something positive and bigger will happen. Heck, even the Legion put their toe in the recent NVC water.

How about a PR Advocacy/Company X. The CO is Romeo Dallaire, the XO is Rick Hillier? I can still dream canít I?

LoggieÖ a lobbyist? Letís just take a shortcut and buy a few politicians, no one will notice in Ottawa.

Teen, Personal stories not to be ignored? Hmm oneís and twoís o.k. Beyond OVO success stories, others no one knows about but I was reminded of Jennie M. Personal. Caretaker support and training by a loved one. Look what it took her. Chasing Fantino down the hall (gotta love it), the media (primetime news)
And I believe that ďimplementationĒ is sooner than later is it not?

Cheers, pinger.
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Re: Itís time for Veteransí voices to be heard

Post by Guest on Tue 21 Oct 2014, 23:19

yup right idea pinger been looking at names myself kina crossed those guys off today while going through bio's . not for an advocacy but a single political wing for vets . that way the advocates can keep on doing what they are doing and the political wing can take care of the politics .

man im tellin ya if you cant offer these guys money , votes or something they can turn into money or votes they just do not want to do a fracking thing for ya.

yup bad PR can take away some votes but normally not money we have been doing that for decades now and well....... HERE WE ARE .

what do people with money and power want ????

more money and power.

these are the type of guys that will throw 10s of millions of taxpayers money at something to get 1ore 2 mill filtered back into various campaign funds .

so if ya want these guys to listen your gona have to have something for them.

propat

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