Author Topic: Situation Report. Veterans Summit April 14 2015 National War Memorial  (Read 1237 times)

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Situation Report. Veterans Summit April 14 2015 National War Memorial

Long day, by the time it was over, did not get back to hotel room until close to midnight. pain levels by then were pretty high and i was, as you might imagine, exhausted. I should like to thank Lou for getting me there on time and helping out with the scooter and Sylvain, who did a most excellent job as the CVA Observer. While his skills were not required due to lack of substance, I was very reassured knowing that he had my six. 

One of the more interesting facets was the inclusion of THREE serving generals, all of whom had been seconded to VAC   To my utter surprise, there was ALL RCR! Lordy.... key positions to, this is a very good development.

Interesting event, over twenty organizations present. Morning was spent listening to Minister O'Toole and Deputy Minister Natynczyk promoting the recent announcements / vision  and welcoming the new stakeholders to the table. While interesting, it was merely a rehash of words already spoken to these proposals and very little substance was provided. The clarification of Pain and Suffering Award inclusion into the Retirement benefit remains unanswered and seconded, yet again, too "We'll get back to you on that one...."

Of note, VAC will be hiring one hundred part time and fulltime Disability agents to speed up the application process. This is a good thing, once again, validation of an issue we have identified through consultation and have been championing for reform. Hopefully,  they will be hired quickly and this is not an announcement without substance, put in abeyance due to electoral restrictions. 

Lunch followed by a breakout sessions where the stakeholders were divided into two groups, "On Line " advocacy groups and the traditional organizations. A technical briefing was provided on the announcements and a five minute window allowed to define your respective organizations mandate, three of the major issues that you were working on.

The minister brought up the discord on Facebook, the disrespectful manner many veterans treat each other, their lack of respect for one another and his concerns over the trigger effect it would have on the wounded. I share his concerns and was very was grateful to speak to the CVA experience, the fact that we CAN make a difference by enforcing code of conduct rules capable of ensuring respect is maintained, Noted also that many of those currently ravaging his board by, in his terms, bullying.... have been banned from the CVA network for repeated violations of the CVA code of Conduct.

Conclusion and brief reception at the warm museum.

Advocacy assessment. The Sacred Obligation principles were not discussed during the meetings, (other than in the CVA introduction) so we are no further ahead on that level than were were Monday. Nor were the flaws with in the proposals discussed or an opportunity presented to speak to them after the minister spoke. That being said, there was an opportunity for Sylvain and I to interact amongst the new stakeholders, to listen to their positions, to create new alliances.

Okay, finally caught up on this level. I wish I was reporting something of substance, presenting a better report, one wherein I could say the major issues of contention (THE LUMP SUM AWARD!!!!!-PENSION ACT EQUALITY) were discussed, that this government has heard the pleas of the of the wounded who seek equality.... But I cannot. There are many who remain adrift, abandoned, forlorn.... .  our duty is clear, steady up, press on.   

Michael L Blais CD
President - Founder Canadian Veterans Advocacy
6618 Harper Drive, Niagara Falls, Ontario 
905-359-9247  /// hm 905-357-3306