• Thanks for stopping by. Logging in to a registered account will remove all generic ads. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

New Minister of Veterans Affairs: Mandate Letter, etc.

PuckChaser

Moderator
Staff member
Directing Staff
Mentor
Reaction score
569
Points
1,060
Sheep Dog AT said:
Could you spell out the conspiracy to me?  I'm a little obtuse today.

I don't get it either. He was shot in a nightclub district, at night, at a time when crime was exponentially increasing. Allegedly upwards of 10,000 people would hit the streets after last call around that time, in that area.

I'm all for calling the Liberals out when they do something wrong, but this is as stupid as Obama's birth certificate.
 

TCBF

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
0
PuckChaser said:
I don't get it either. He was shot in a nightclub district, at night, at a time when crime was exponentially increasing. Allegedly upwards of 10,000 people would hit the streets after last call around that time, in that area.

I'm all for calling the Liberals out when they do something wrong, but this is as stupid as Obama's birth certificate.

- Place and population are irrelevant. Police know who was in the shooter's car. Sentences are ridiculously light for paralyzing someone.
- Why?
 

Scoobie Newbie

Army.ca Legend
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Could you please spell it out for me?
P.S. There is a guy in these parts the cut someone's head off on a bus and after a few years is now allowed to live alone unsupervised so I have little faith in the courts and didn't see a conspiracy.
 

brihard

Army.ca Fixture
Mentor
Reaction score
1,692
Points
890
PuckChaser said:
5 bucks says its the ABC Veterans clowns who get inside the circle. The original meeting with veterans groups was just a show. There is absolutely 0 reason to keep the identity of anyone meeting with the Minister on collective veteran issues (not personal matters) a secret.

So much for Real Change, and Open and Transparent government, right?

The Ministerial advisory Groups started under Erin O'Toole, met in Charlottetown in July, and then in Ottawa in December. I was part of the July and December meetings. So were Mark Campbell, Jody Mitic, Aaron Bedard, Bruce Henwood, Brian McKenna, Bruce Moncur, Brian Forbes (Equitas society lawyer), Alice Aiken, David Mack, and probably a couple others whose names elude me. There were originally two groups, one on policy/legislation, one on service delivery. They have now expanded to six groups, adding mental health, long term care, family, and commemoration. Only the policy group has met in the new round of meetings, the rest of us are still awaiting confirmation on group composition and the next meetings, prior to the next stakeholders summit on May 9th.

Secrecy has not been a part of this, the department merely doesn't have its crap together on publishing info to us, never mind to the broader veterans community. We as participants are beginning to push for formalized and published agendas and minutes to avoid exactly this kind of conspiracy theory nonsense.

The ministerial advisory groups were originally conceived by O'Toole to bring together people working within the veterans' community to get some ground truth about what is happening out there unfiltered by bureaucracy. The advisory groups are not making decisions, we're not writing policy or legislation. It's a lot of 'here's what we're seeing and hearing, and here are some issued we can identify with x, y, and z'.

We are not paid or remunerated in any way. There are no honourariums. We get reimbursed for travel, meals and accommodations.

The July meetings have resulted in considerable reductions in forms and paperwork for veterans seeking benefits. After that most of what was being talked about got kyboshed because of election mode. The December meeting was mostly a get-acquainted session and accomplished little. We hope to see each of the groups meet before the May stakeholders' conference in order to provide meaningful input to same. The biggest issues on the radar will include the pension option - which we all knew would not make it in time for this budget - the mental health inpatient facility, probably the education benefit, and continued work towards more efficient and effective client services, plus whatever some of the other newly established committees choose to focus on.

The participants in these groups were chosen initially by Erin O'Toole last spring. We were all retained by Kent Hehr, and the ministry (we do not know who the OPI is, but Walt Natynczyk - deputy minister of veterans affairs - has been closely involved the whole time and is a good speculation) has picked out new people to expand the breadth of the groups.

What it is NOT is some 'ABC' love in, particularly as this was originally created by O'Toole. Most of the loud noise makers are not in anyw ay involved. LArgely it's people whohave been knuckling down and simply doing work with vets that put us in a position to have some situational awareness.

I am more than happy to answer questions within my arcs on this. We have nothing to hide, and as participants are frustrated that other vets are starting to rip our throats out on this due to poor comms.
 

TCBF

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Sheep Dog AT said:
Could you please spell it out for me?
P.S. There is a guy in these parts the cut someone's head off on a bus and after a few years is now allowed to live alone unsupervised so I have little faith in the courts and didn't see a conspiracy.

- But everyone knows who he is, how crazy he is/was, and where he is now. He was bat shit crazy, not a gangster.
- This wasn't a bar fight or two drunks fighting over a Lee Enfield in a hunt camp, it has a handgun in a car fired by a person in a car at a person in another car. We hand out stiffer penalties for animal cruelty.
Now, I acknowledge that we did not know the victim then, but if this happened tomorrow to one of our own, this whole site would collapse from the vitriol concerning the sentencing.
- More of a curiosity than a conspiracy. But, odd, none the less. Who shot him? Why? Why the half-hearted response to the shooting for all concerned? Such responses are usually reserved for incidents where both conflicting sides belong to a 'high risk lifestyle'.
 

Pusser

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
1
Points
410
Is Mr Bruyea's article implying that only injured veterans have the right to be involved in these discussions?  Veterans Affairs is  concerned with all veterans, not just the injured ones.
 

ModlrMike

Army.ca Veteran
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
497
Points
930
Pusser said:
Is Mr Bruyea's article implying that only injured veterans have the right to be involved in these discussions?  Veterans Affairs is  concerned with all veterans, not just the injured ones.

It doesn't look like an implication to me, more like a direct statement:

"Veteran status does not confer insight into disabled veterans. It’s quite the opposite. Military culture has been and continues to be grossly insensitive to the injured, particularly the psychologically wounded. The veteran community is rife with malicious attacks on the wounded when they speak out. Yet speaking out is precisely what is needed for change to occur, including in the compassion-challenged senior bureaucratic culture at Veterans Affairs. Processes to create programs are as important as the programs themselves."
 

brihard

Army.ca Fixture
Mentor
Reaction score
1,692
Points
890
I won't add to the fratricide going on in the veterans community on this one. Suffice to say he seems concerned at the possibility that the ministerial advisory groups do not include a health representation of disabled vets or those dealing with mental health issues. That is assuredly not the case, and those of us who do not ourselves fall into those categories are very much of the 'right' mindset on the subjects. This would be alleviated, I think, with better communications from the department about who is involved. It is what it is.
 

The Bread Guy

Moderator
Staff member
Directing Staff
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
278
Points
1,130
Brihard said:
I won't add to the fratricide going on in the veterans community on this one. Suffice to say he seems concerned at the possibility that the ministerial advisory groups do not include a health representation of disabled vets or those dealing with mental health issues. That is assuredly not the case, and those of us who do not ourselves fall into those categories are very much of the 'right' mindset on the subjects. This would be alleviated, I think, with better communications from the department about who is involved. It is what it is.
Thanks, Brihard, for sharing the shades of grey missed by black-and-white shared elsewhere on this sensitive issue.
 

Danjanou

Army.ca Fixture
Reaction score
0
Points
0
PuckChaser said:
5 bucks says its the ABC Veterans clowns who get inside the circle. The original meeting with veterans groups was just a show. There is absolutely 0 reason to keep the identity of anyone meeting with the Minister on collective veteran issues (not personal matters) a secret.

So much for Real Change, and Open and Transparent government, right?

Based on some of their rants on their FB pages of late I don't think so.
 

TCM621

Sr. Member
Subscriber
Reaction score
153
Points
430
I was with him until this:

They are also the A-list of individuals who, along with me, have had their psychological injuries involuntarily or voluntarily disclosed. Senior Veterans Affairs bureaucrats and non-injured veterans have long stigmatized and misunderstood those with injuries, especially the psychological kind. Is Hehr falling victim to prejudice against psychologically injured veterans?

At this point it is clear he has an agenda and his own axe to grind. It sounds like he is upset becuase he was left out.

That said, since the change in government I have had even less communication with VAC than before if that is even possible. They "suspended" a reassment yet at no time did they contact me or send me a letter informing me of this fact or the reason why. I send them a secure message over a week ago and haven't even received back a "we got your message" reply.
 

Teager

Sr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
Builds on what Brihard was saying. This does come from the CVA Facebook page but shared from Mark Campbell with an update to Equitas as well.

From Mark Campbell, Equitas. Please read and share
Well, it has been another busy time, with two trips to Ottawa in the space of a week and a half. The first journey was for a second meeting of the re-booted Minister's Policy Advisory Group on 6 April. This was followed by an Equitas Class Action Lawsuit meeting with Minister Hehr and his principal staff on 11 April. With a day in the air each way for each meeting, that was 4 days of travel for two days of work. In a word, Painful!!
The first meeting lasted a day and a half, and I am pleased to report that I found it to be extremely constructive and worthwhile. Unlike the previous "Meet and Greets", this series of briefings and meetings focused on relevant issues and substance. A broad range of topics was discussed, with the primary focus on identifying gaps in the New Veterans' Charter (NVC) and their potential fixes. It should come as no surprise that the primary topic of discussion was the return to some form of pension. Once again, confidentiality precludes me from mentioning the detail of our discussions. This confidentiality is necessary to curtail rampant internet speculation as much as it is to promote a free exchange of ideas among the Group members. The official Record of Discussion, along with the composition of the Policy Advisory Group, will be made public on the VAC website within two weeks of the meeting. Officially released detail of the discussions will be found there. Until then, here is the English version of the official communique:
"The Veterans Affairs Canada Policy Advisory Group met in Ottawa April 6 and 7, 2016 to develop substantive recommendations for the purpose of implementing the priorities for legislation and regulatory reform contained in the Mandate Letter received by the Minister of Veterans Affairs from the Prime Minister and which delineates the commitments of the new Federal Government to the Veterans’ community.
In accordance with its mandate, the Policy Advisory Group continues to specifically identify the gaps, weaknesses and inequities in veterans’ legislation, regulation and policy that need to be addressed by Veterans Affairs Canada in order to rectify these deficiencies and shortcomings, with particular emphasis on the Canadian Forces Members and Veterans Re-Establishment and Compensation Act (the New Veterans Charter).
In pursuit of its fundamental objective, the Policy Advisory Group is charting a course of action to ensure that Canadian Armed Forces and RCMP Veterans and their families receive the care, compassion, respect, support and economic opportunities they deserve through the policy recommendations that the Advisory Group will provide to the Minister of Veterans Affairs."
The Policy Advisory Group will meet again in May 2016, just prior to the next semi-annual Stakeholder Summit involving all 50-odd Veterans' Advocacy Groups. Until then, those that dd not get a seat at the policy table will simply have to cool their jets. The Stakeholder Summit will afford all recognized Veterans' Groups an opportunity to be seen and heard, as has been promised by the GOC's consultative process. To allow every single advocacy group, no matter how well-intentioned a seat on every committee would be to invite paralysis of process. It would simply be too cumbersome to get any real work done (eg. Too many cooks in the kitchen!). Hence the selective membership of the six committees, but the all-inclusive nature of the semi-annual Stakeholder Summits.
The Equitas meeting with Minister Hehr, his principal staff and the Department of Justice Lawyers did not go as well as the earlier Policy Committee Meeting. After a year of discussions, the two sides were finally unable to agree on a resolution of the case. As a result, it now appears that we will be headed back to court at the end of May. We will hear the B.C. Appeal Court judges rule on the Federal Government's Appeal of our initial win in the B.C. Supreme Court. This new decision will be a key determinant in whether or not we (serving and/or former soldiers) have the Constitutional right to sue the GOC in the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC). As such, this ruling will set the stage for any subsequent legal action to be pursued in the SCC. As stated before, we are not yet finished with the legal system. Yes, the Liberal GOC is finally moving on the real issues of substance that have plagued veterans under the NVC for the past 10 years. But now is not the time to let down our guard. After all, how do you think we got this far? It wasn't with our sparkling personalities and charming words, I can assure you. The Equitas class action lawsuit has been instrumental in bringing the GOC to heel thus far regarding the wishes of our nation's veterans. The case will continue until it becomes unquestionably clear that Canada's new generation of Veterans are going to be treated with the same degree of care, compassion and respect as our previous generations of Veterans under the Government of the day. That is it, that is all.
Edited to add that following the Equitas meeting, myself, Aaron Bedard and Brian McKenna got to spend 30 minutes or so alone with the Minister of National Defence (MND). Both Brian and Aaron know Minister Sajjan personally from their shared Reserve Force time (Brian) as well as their work on his campaign during the last Federal election. We were able to discuss matters related to the Equitas lawsuit and general issues surrounding Veteran transition to civilian life. As you would expect, Minister Sajjan was an extremely gracious and friendly host. I must admit to being just a tad "star-struck" by this unexpectedly close encounter with Canada's very own "Badass" MND!
Until next month (or so),
Mark
 

brihard

Army.ca Fixture
Mentor
Reaction score
1,692
Points
890
Yup, Mark is legit on that. It matches what a couple of the other Equitas members who were at that meeting have told me.
 

Pusser

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
1
Points
410
Tcm621 said:
I send them a secure message over a week ago and haven't even received back a "we got your message" reply.

Since those messages are automatically generated, maybe they didn't receive it.  Emails do sometimes disappear into the electronic ether and the more security systems involved, the greater the chance of this happening.  Just last week, I sent several messages to Service Ontario via their website that were not received.
 

TCM621

Sr. Member
Subscriber
Reaction score
153
Points
430
Pusser said:
Since those messages are automatically generated, maybe they didn't receive it.  Emails do sometimes disappear into the electronic ether and the more security systems involved, the greater the chance of this happening.  Just last week, I sent several messages to Service Ontario via their website that were not received.
It has been 10 days so maybe that is the case.
 

Retired AF Guy

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
41
Points
530
TCBF said:
- But everyone knows who he is, how crazy he is/was, and where he is now. He was bat crap crazy, not a gangster.
- This wasn't a bar fight or two drunks fighting over a Lee Enfield in a hunt camp, it has a handgun in a car fired by a person in a car at a person in another car. We hand out stiffer penalties for animal cruelty.
Now, I acknowledge that we did not know the victim then, but if this happened tomorrow to one of our own, this whole site would collapse from the vitriol concerning the sentencing.
- More of a curiosity than a conspiracy. But, odd, none the less. Who shot him? Why? Why the half-hearted response to the shooting for all concerned? Such responses are usually reserved for incidents where both conflicting sides belong to a 'high risk lifestyle'.

This what I was able to find out:

He was out late with teammates on Oct. 3, 1991, when he was the victim of one of the most shocking acts of senseless violence in Calgary history. After a boozy night at the pub, Hehr and pals were at a stop light, waiting to take Crowchild Trail back to campus. Another car was stopped a few lanes away. Hehr taunted them out his passenger window. One of them flashed a gun, and Hehr’s car raced away, the other guys in pursuit. “The last thing I remember before that was telling the guys: ‘Ah, that’s not a real gun; that’s a water gun,’ ” Hehr says. “Then, I don’t remember anything until we get to the fire department. So there’s probably a five- or six-minute period where my mind has said: ‘No, that’s a physical trauma we will not relive.’ ”

In those blank minutes, Martin Malaska and Jason Lee Graden sped up alongside Hehr’s car, and a bullet sliced into Hehr’s neck. He slumped forward; a friend in the backseat tried to hold him up. (Malaska got three years in prison and Graden got six months for the incident, though courts never determined who fired the pistol.) Richard remembers his son’s first words at the hospital: “Mom, dad, I’m paralyzed. I wish I was dead.”

Article Link: Kent Hehr: The Energizer Bunny who’s back in the game. Macleans Magazine 08 Feb 2016
 
Top