Standing Up for Canada’s Hard-Working Veterans
As shown by our presence in the First and Second World Wars, the Korean War, the Persian Gulf War, the mission in Afghanistan and countless peacekeeping assignments around the globe, Canada’s troops have always demonstrated exceptional courage and determination.
Our soldiers, sailors, airmen and airwomen put their lives at risk every day to defend Canadian sovereignty, fight for our values, and help create a fair and just world for each and every one of us. That’s why our Conservative Government is taking concrete action to address gaps in the way Canada cares for our Veterans and their families. We are listening to the concerns of military personnel, Veterans and their families and delivering real relief for those who need it.
Today’s conflicts have created new challenges for our men and women in uniform, and often cause them to serve in unique and dangerous situations. Ensuring our Veterans and their families have the support they need, when they need it, is a priority for our Conservative Government. We are working to update Canada’s current support system to better reflect the needs of Veterans of modern-day conflicts and their families.
When troops return home with a service related injury, making ends meet is a real and significant concern. Often, it is a family member who becomes the caregiver – he or she makes the medical appointments, pays the bills and makes sure the children are taken care of. That’s why this fall, our Government is proposing changes to the New Veterans Charter. Our action would increase financial support for seriously injured Veterans. It would help ill and injured Veterans who are unable to return to work by providing them with adequate monthly income through an enhanced earnings loss benefit. It would also boost the annual income for those released at lower salary levels.
We have also announced our support of $52.5 million, over the span of five years, to the establishment of a “Legacy of Care” – a suite of five new initiatives to help seriously injured men and women in uniform. They include:
· Barrier-Free transitional housing for injured soldiers undergoing treatment at one of Canada’s Armed Forces’ seven centres of expertise in rehabilitation;
· Support services such as wheelchair accessible transportation to medical appointments, caregiver relief, child care, and the delivery of medical supplies and groceries during rehabilitation;
· Up to $100 per day for family or close friends who leave their job to assume the role of caregiver;
· Improving access to Canada’s Armed Forces Spousal Education Upgrade Program; and,
· Making it easier for seriously ill or injured Veterans to access help, information, and individual attention, through enhanced case management support.
For generations, members of our Armed Forces have worked every day to serve our country and uphold its most treasured values.
Our Conservative Government will continue to work with Veterans organizations and advisory groups on the issues confronting Veterans. We want to help and recognize those who have sacrificed so much to do the job Canadians ask of them. It’s the least we can do for those who have placed themselves in harm’s way in the name of promoting peace and freedom around the world.
Randy is the Conservative MP for the federal riding of Prince Albert
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