Just got home from a very successful trip to Parliament hill.
Outstanding effort and a hearty Bravo Zulu to everybody who participated in the CVNDOP missions first phase, a nationwide series of protests. Heavy rains across the Maritimes could not deter participation in the east although I am certain the numbers would have been greater had not the weather been so wet. I would note that there were more events then expected as reported by newspapers across the land, even to the point of individuals going to there MPs and voicing their support for our cause. In Tilsonburg, Ontario, a group of WW2 vets stood tall, God bless them all. I am so proud of everybody who answered the patriot’s call yesterday and that such great Canadians live in this wonderful land. My compliments to you all.
The CVNDOP email campaign continues until the end of the week. Tell your friends, neighbors, kids, anybody with an internet connection and a email address to write their MPs and ask them to reform the NVC charter and restore the same dignified compensation as our WW2, Korea and peacekeeping veterans were provided.
It is also vital that you approach your MP should you see him over the Remembrance Day period and voice your support. The government has already countered as expected, quoting the fifty-eight thousand dollar number noted in the last sit rep.
I would encourage you to ask the following questions should you see your MPs during the Remembrance day period.
Will this money be retroactive to a veterans application of claim. hat happens to the catastrophically injured veteran when he/she reaches age sixty-five? Just what percentage of the 58000 dollars ceases and what will be the income for the rest of his life? Is the 40 000 base line promised for privates taken away at 65? We know the veterans 1000 dollar catastrophic award ceases, as does the SISIP LTD and CPP disability awards. The ELB ends also, so what exactly happens to the disabled veteran then, just what kind of dignified life will he have when compared to the veterans of the pre New Veterans Charter?
Ask them how much of this $58,000 disability award is taxed? Compare the answer to the taxation (there is none) on your provincial WISB program. The traditional system was NOT taxed, once again exposing the flaws of the government’s proposals and the size of the increase when compared to the traditional system. It is not unrealistic to think that todays generation of veterans
Minister R. Blackburn is also quoted today in the Globe & Mail stating the VAC cares for 750,000 veterans. Sadly, Mr. Lawrie Hawn also used this ploy in the House last week and was immediately corrected by Mr. Stoffer. I would note that Blackburn was in attendance. Mr. Hawn agreed that less then a THIRD of the 75,0000 veterans he mentioned then and what Mr. Blackburn would mention now are covered by VAC, not THREE QUARTERS OF A MILLION veterans Mr. Blackburn incorrectly proclaimed to the Globe’s audience.
This is somewhat disingenuous to say the least, don’t you think? And who suffers for it? Canada’s sons and daughters.
We must stay focused on the facts, not political smoke. Our troops need our help and clearly will for some time. It is our duty as veterans to provide that support by insisting the lump sum be abolished, at least for those who have sustained injuries. Personally, I see no problem with lump sums awards being provided for those awarded 25 percent or less and would be interested in dialogue about this proposal. Those who receive pensions for hearing, for example, might prefer to be paid in lump sum format as long as hearing aides and batteries are provided for life. But, for those who will need long-term care, that cannot work due to the disability, for those who need the same standard of care our WW2, Korean and Peacekeeping veterans enjoyed.
Our mission is clear. We must stand fast!
The names of the Facebook pages have been changed to reflect the new reality and the mission I am committed to fulfill. We have established an outstanding nationwide infrastructure, and I hope that the team leaders and participants will see the true merit of our intentions and continue to support our veterans through the new Canadian Veterans Advocacy Facebook site (former Stogran site) and the NEXT Canadian Veterans National Day of Dialogue, slated for Saturday, November 5th, 2011.
We have made our point through protest. Now is the time for the next phase – a period of dialogue about these issues and proposals for effective solutions. I think the word “Dialogue” is a much better word then Protest, and when Colonel Stogran suggested it, I felt it was right. Particularly with the format of veterans going to their MPs to address their concerns. I am hoping that you will spread the word so that we might increase our membership. The higher our numbers rise, the more impact we can have on affairs in Ottawa and the more soldiers/veterans we can help. I would particularly encourage younger veterans and those serving to join our membership list as, in addition to securing financial freedoms for our future veterans, we intend to provide information/assistance to that great percentage of veterans from the peacekeeping and Afghan eras that do not wish to belong to the legion/organized veterans groups and as such, have no one to assist with the intricacies of filling VAC forms or precisely what benefits they are entitled to receive.
The Canadian Veterans Advocacy will not be a paper organization, but a true advocacy composed of veterans who are working together to ensure our troops and veterans are treated with the respect and dignity.
Michael L. Blais CD
Chairman – Canadian Veterans Advocacy
Mike Blais Rcr Cfds