TORONTO, Oct. 8, 2013 /CNW/ - The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of
Veterans Affairs, visited Humber College today to highlight new changes
that cut red tape and help improve Veterans' career rebuilding success
after they leave the military. He was joined at the announcement by Guy
Parent, Canada's Veterans Ombudsman. These changes give the more than
1,300 Veterans taking part in Veterans Affairs Canada's vocational
rehabilitation program greater flexibility to access the tools they
need for their training, and will cut down on wait-times related to
"The Harper Government is committed to supporting the individual needs
of Veterans and their families to help them successfully transition to
civilian life. As we celebrate National Family Week, we are proud to
demonstrate our ongoing commitment to them through this new
initiative," said Minister Fantino. "By taking this action, we are
making it easier for transitioning Veterans to focus on what matters
most: getting the training they need to lead successful lives and to
apply their exceptional leadership to new challenges."
The improvements, which are now in effect, represent an estimated
investment of $2 million over the next five years.
As a result of these changes, an expanded list of training expenses will
be now be considered in individual vocational rehabilitation training
plans, such as required computer software, e-books, campus parking and
training equipment. Veterans are now also able to claim individual
vocational rehabilitation expenses through an overall program funding
envelope, to a maximum total value of up to $75,800 per person. This
change gives Veterans more flexibility in their vocational
rehabilitation plans, which are based on the individual needs of each
Veteran. These changes also simplify training plan approval and claims
processing, and provide Veterans with decisions more quickly.
"In taking this step, we are listening to the careful, detailed and
considered advice of the Veterans Ombudsman, and also to the feedback I
have personally received from Veterans themselves," said Minister
Fantino. "This is yet another example of how we are taking concrete
action to improve services to Veterans and their families."
"Humber has been privileged to be a partner in providing our Veterans
with vocational training and support," said Chris Whitaker, President,
Humber College. "Expanding access to these services is an important
step in helping to make the transition to civilian life as productive
and meaningful as possible."
"When we assist Veterans at the Veterans Transition Network, we know
addressing psychological stress injuries is only part of the task.
Reducing barriers to access for Veterans undergoing vocational
rehabilitation is an excellent enhancement to a great program," said
Tim Laidler, Executive Director of the Veterans Transition Network.
"Being a highly individualized process, bringing more flexibility to
the program will make a significant impact on Veterans and their
This initiative builds on the Veterans Transition Action Plan, launched
in October 2012, which consists of new measures to cut red tape,
enhancements to the Department's delivery of services, new
opportunities for Veterans beginning post-military careers,
ground-breaking research into the real-life experiences and needs of
releasing Canadian Armed Forces personnel, and building cultural
As Veterans Affairs Canada continues to cut red tape, more improvements
will be introduced.
Since 2006, the Government of Canada has invested almost $4.7 billion in
new funding to enhance Veterans benefits, programs and services.
Veterans Affairs Canada's support and services offer the right care at
the right time to achieve the best results for Veterans and their
families. Find out more at veterans.gc.ca.
SOURCE: Veterans Affairs Canada
For further information:
Media Relations Advisor
Veterans Affairs Canada
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs