Expanded version of new card and Family Service Card still needed
OTTAWA, Sept. 11, 2018 /CNW/ - The Royal Canadian Legion is supportive of the new Veteran's Service Card introduced today by Veterans Affairs Canada and the Department of National Defence, but is still pushing for further changes.
"While not an identification card, this new card does reflect our Veterans' service to Canada, and more people will receive the recognition they deserve," says Tom Irvine, Legion Dominion President. "It's definitely a step in the right direction and we'd like to see it further adapted," he says.
The Legion has long advocated for a Veteran's Identification Card with expanded eligibility to include all personnel who have passed basic training and been released honourably. This card is an updated version of a previous one, which had limited eligibility and was eventually phased out. Like the previous card, this new version does not allow Veterans to use it as an officially recognized piece of identification in Canada, for which the Legion will continue to advocate.
The Legion is also advocating for a Veteran's Family Identification card to honour the inherent resilience of Veterans' families, and to pay tribute to the sacrifices families make in support of Canada.
In the meantime, the Veteran's Service Card will help the Legion's 1,400 branches across the country assess the accuracy of the service record presented by potential new "Ordinary" members, and avoid the "stolen valour" trap set by some individuals who claim to have a military record that does not exist. It is important to note that members of the general public are also eligible for Legion membership.
The Royal Canadian Legion's work revolves around helping and advocating for our Veterans. Our initial assessment of the card is based on years of experience in helping Canada's Veterans obtain the service and supports they need and want.
About The Royal Canadian Legion
Founded in 1925, the Legion is Canada's largest Veteran support and community service organization. We are a non-profit organization with a national reach across Canada as well as branches in the U.S., Europe and Mexico. With more than 275,000 members, many of whom volunteer an extraordinary amount of time to their branches, our strength is in our numbers.