Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

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Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Teentitan on Tue 19 Jan 2016, 15:18

Ottawa, ON - January 19, 2016

It is a new year and a new government. It is time to set our sights and aim at targets that will bring improvements to the way our Veterans and their families are treated.

I have briefed the Hon. Kent Hehr, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence on the priorities and ongoing work of the Office of the Veterans Ombudsman (OVO). Many Veteransí organizations and advocates saw him in action at the Veterans Summit, where we had an opportunity to witness his enthusiasm and willingness to move forward on Veteransí issues. His support of me is appreciated, and although we may disagree on some points in the future, I look forward to advising him on achieving his mandate goals.

Last week I briefed Minister Hehrís Parliamentary Secretary, Karen McCrimmon, M.P. (Kanata-Carleton). As many of you know, she is a Veteran herself. In coming weeks, I will be briefing many other parliamentarians, Veteransí groups and advocates, Veterans and their families and media about the priorities of the OVO and on Veteransí issues, in general. The substance of those briefings is what I want to share with you today.

Key issues that need to be addressed in the short term:

1. Changes to the Permanent Impairment Allowance (PIA):

How PIA is currently administered results in Veterans not being compensated fairly and being financially disadvantaged. Changes are needed to the criteria used to determine the grade levels of PIA to provide better financial security for life for those who need it the most.
The OVOís 2014 study showed that 91 percent of recipients received the lowest PIA grade. It also confirmed that Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) was determining grade levels based on disability and not the economic impact associated with the loss of a military career progression. Subsequent research indicates that this number has increased to 92 percent.
This is a policy change that could be implemented very quickly with immediate positive results for the most financially vulnerable Veterans.
2. Improving support to families:

Families are often the foundation for a Veteranís successful transition to civilian life.
In many cases, families are sacrificing their opportunities to care for their loved ones. When family members become the primary caregivers for severely impaired Veterans, they need to be compensated directly.
The Government needs to support Veteransí families with benefits that include counseling, training and financial compensation.
3. Lifetime financial security and fair compensation for pain and suffering:

Lifetime financial security or economic compensation for the loss of a military career progression addresses loss of earnings (e.g. PIA, Earnings Loss Benefit). Non-economic compensation addresses pain and suffering for the physical and emotional stress caused by an illness or injury.
Many lump both together, but we need to have solutions in place to ensure lifetime financial security for Veterans before resolving compensation for pain and suffering. Otherwise, it leads to confusion and it can skew the analysis of adequate pain and suffering compensation, potentially shortchanging Veterans.
In relation to economic benefits, the OVO is monitoring and assessing those introduced by the previous government in 2015. We are measuring results against the fairness principles of adequacy, sufficiency, and accessibility. Where gaps remain, recommendations will be made.
At the same time, we are ramping up our assessment of the pain and suffering aspects of benefits under the New Veterans Charter to ensure that ill and injured Veterans receive fair compensation.
4. Transition:

Transition is a vital issue for all Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) releasing members, including those medically releasing.
We are conducting a study to determine the factors that best contribute to a successful integration into civilian life, and will be looking for veterans who have transitioned successfully. So, stay tuned for more information! We need your help!
We are also continuing our work with the National Defence and CAF Ombudsman on the Joint Transition Project and will update you regularly on our findings.
5. Veteransí right to know

Veterans have a right to know what information is used to make a disability decision in their cases; how decisions are arrived at; and, what impact those decisions will have on their cases.
To move this forward, I will continue my engagement with the Minister of Veterans Affairs and VAC on my follow-up report on procedural fairness that was released on December 1, 2015.
Finally, our Annual Report is with the Ministerís office and his intention is to table it in Parliament in February 2016.

So 2016 here we come!!!

Guy Parent
Veterans Ombudsman

http://www.ombudsman-veterans.gc.ca/eng/blog/post/303
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Teentitan
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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Guest on Tue 19 Jan 2016, 17:17

He has to get his game on, because his job is on the line, I only wished he moved like this with his previous Master!

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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Riddick on Tue 19 Jan 2016, 18:49

Teen just can't seem to keep his fingers out of the pie!! Good for us! Smile

Thanks Teen.

He didn't mention anything about VRAB or having lawyers paid for to represent us in Federal Court. Anyone have any news/updates in these areas?

Riddick
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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Teentitan on Tue 19 Jan 2016, 19:54

Maybe if you visited his website Nav and read a little you would see that he is following up from the reports from the last 5 years.

Thanks Riddick. I was talking the other day with my guy at the OVO and they are still pushing for the funding for those vets who have to go to Federal Court. But there is that fund in Halifax now run by Stoffer to financially help those who might qualify.

I'll see if I can get any info about some follow-up reports on VRAB and if they have any info on this Stoffer thing.
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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Guest on Wed 20 Jan 2016, 05:55

Excellent info teen..thanks for keeping us all informed.

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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by RCNRetired on Sun 14 Feb 2016, 02:52

How about a damn ID card that would not be hard to do. This is especially needed now that there are more and more businesses that provide cost saving incentives.

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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Guest on Sun 14 Feb 2016, 06:36

RCN....here is something that is new with respect to ID card...don't know if this is something you might be interested in ;

http://www.lookoutnewspaper.com/new-cfone-card-available-veterans/

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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Guest on Sun 14 Feb 2016, 07:27

Where and what is this card good for Trooper cannot find that info anywhere.

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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Guest on Sun 14 Feb 2016, 07:42

Hi wild thing, there is a thread under Notices section of Csat about the CFOne card maybe there is some info there. Take care.

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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by BinRat on Sun 14 Feb 2016, 22:58


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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Dannypaj on Fri 19 Feb 2016, 18:05

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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by bigrex on Fri 19 Feb 2016, 20:56

Does anyone know how many staff there are in the OVO? I'm just curious since that the OVO reports an annual salary of $2.6Million? The OVO website only list members and affiliate members, but I doubt they are the ones answering the phones and such. But of the 22 OVO members and affiliate members, including the Ombudsmen the vast majority are retired senior officers, including two retired Generals. So it's not like they are needing that money, not when all but the most severely disabled Veterans are being forced to accept next to nothing for their service.
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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by Guest on Fri 19 Feb 2016, 22:57

2.6 million in salarys not including claims and millions more in office budget and they don't have the power to do schitt. Where's my chainsaw Pinger here is some fat that needs trimmed.

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Re: Office of the Veterans Ombudsman Priorities

Post by pinger on Sat 20 Feb 2016, 19:28

I really don't know what to believe short of access to info, money and numbers.
But bigrex... some 22 OVO members with an annual budget of 2.6 million breaks down to $100G each pretty much right?

So then I start thinking of cost/benefit analysis, as well as critiquing/vetting the credentials of ALL members of the OVO. That's transparency. Make the motives clearly transparent.

But it's all relative first and foremost to the GoC for accountability is it not?
Here's hoping.

In the mean time I trust the chainsaw I've always used. You still have yours wild thing. Keep it very sharp with bureaucratic oil. It can be a long, hard, fracking road.

Stay well everyone
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