Swift Current, SK – On Wednesday, January 23, David Anderson, MP for Cypress Hills-Grasslands hosted the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs and representatives from local Royal Canadian Legions at a downtown luncheon.
The minister has been travelling across the country gathering veteran’s comments and insights as a way to help ensure the New Veterans Charter continues to evolve with the changing needs of the men and women it serves.
“Having an open dialogue about the benefits our government provides to our men and women in uniform is an important conversation and I was honoured to be able to host this event. The people who attended expressed their support for the New Veterans Charter and future enhancements to the program. The minister was open to suggestions and ideas and it was good to have him here,” said Anderson.
Discussions included the need to keep reservists who return to rural, remote areas connected with Veterans support service, as well as addressing Service Canada’s role in providing an ongoing level of service for veterans. Also discussed was the Disability Award which provides injured Canadian Force members or veterans with a tax-free payment for injury or illness resulting from military service. It was suggested by some roundtable guests that the government should make financial advice a mandatory requirement for young soldiers receiving large payments.
Support was also expressed for the Community War Memorial Program. Open to all Canadians, this program has already funded projects such as: the new cenotaph in Morse and the repairs to cenotaphs in both Elrose and Shaunavon. Information on the program can be found by logging on to www.vac.gc.ca.
“I would like to express my thanks to the men and women who took the time to join us in Swift Current yesterday. I also thank Minister Blaney for spending time in our riding. He brings a great deal of energy and knowledge with him,” Anderson concluded.