OTTAWA, Nov. 19, 2013 /CNW/ - The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of Veterans Affairs, today made his inaugural appearance before the House of Commons' Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs since his appointment as Minister in July. Before committee, Minister Fantino reiterated the Government's support for a comprehensive review of the New Veterans Charter, including all the enhancements that have been made to it to date, with a special focus placed on the most seriously injured, support for families and the delivery of programs by Veterans Affairs Canada.
During his appearance, the Minister asked the Committee to consult with Veterans and other key stakeholders on options for how the New Veterans Charter could clearly define and demonstrate the Government of Canada's relationship with Canadian Veterans.
"The work our Government does each day to serve Canadian Veterans can be called many things: duty, responsibility, commitment, social contract, sacred obligation or covenant. It is all of those things," said Minister Fantino. "Our Government is committed to ensuring that we give Canada's Veterans the clarity they have asked for. As part of the comprehensive review, I have asked the Committee to determine how best we can state our commitment to Canada's Veterans, and what is the best format for doing so."
The New Veterans Charter, which was passed unanimously by Parliament in 2005 and implemented in 2006, is specifically designed to provide Veterans with the tools, assistance and support they need to effectively transition into civilian life and continue to contribute their exceptional leadership skills to building a strong and resilient Canada, just as they did in uniform.
The New Veterans Charter was reviewed by Parliament in 2011. Enhancements made through that review include legislative and regulatory changes which total $2 billion in new investments over the life of key programs. These changes increased support for severely injured Veterans and their families facing the greatest challenges making the transition to civilian life, and ensured ill and injured Veterans have an adequate income.
"Through the comprehensive parliamentary review, we are listening to Veterans and their families, and building on the 160 recommendations that have already been incorporated into the New Veterans Charter in order to make responsible changes to better support our former personnel," said Minister Fantino.
The comprehensive review of the New Veterans Charter, by legislators and with input from Veterans, their family members, public officials, the Veterans Ombudsman and the Veterans stakeholder community, serves as a key forum to find responsible changes to improve the already robust systems of support in place to help Canada's Veterans.
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.
2013 is the Year of the Korean War Veteran—Canada proudly remembers the heroes of the Korean War and their brave fight to defend the Republic of Korea and uphold freedom, democracy and the rule of law. For more information on Canada's role in the Korean War, visit 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