NCVA Update

Message on the Appointment of New Veterans Affairs Minister Seamus O'Regan

The following is a message on the recent appointment of The Honourable Seamus O'Regan as Minister of Veterans Affairs from Brian N. Forbes, Chairman of the National Council of Veteran Associations in Canada and Chairman of the Executive Committee of The War Amputations of Canada:

I would advise that Prime Minister Trudeau has shuffled his Cabinet which will have direct impact on multiple Government departments and be of significant import in our work on behalf of veterans and their families.

With specific reference to the veterans' portfolio Mr. Seamus O'Regan has been appointed the new Minister of Veterans Affairs and Mr. Kent Hehr has been moved to the Ministry of Sport and Persons with Disabilities.

It will be interesting to note the effect these changes will have on ministerial staff and departmental hierarchy with particular reference to ongoing VAC/DND efforts to implement the Mandate Letter received by the Minister from the PM to more effectively satisfy the needs and expectations of the veterans' community.

In my opinion, it is fair to say, as enunciated in my earlier report that the recent Federal Budget 2017 was largely disappointing in its failure to address the "elephant in the room" as to the financial disparity between benefits available under the Pension Act and the New Veterans Charter and its adoption of a policy to "kick the can down the road" on establishing a promised lifelong pension for disabled veterans.

Please read the letter I have sent to Minister O'Regan following his appointment.