Letters to the Editor

Lack of support for our heroes

An open letter to MP Russ Hiebert.

Your government’s treatment of current members and retired veterans of our armed forces is inexcusable.

Not enough is being done to help soldiers who are physically and mentally injured while in service; they often end up with long-term disabilities or struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder.

However, instead of helping them, your government is making decisions that make lives more difficult. The recent closing of eight local offices of Veterans Affairs across Canada illustrates this lack of compassion.

These unsung heroes relied on these offices to get personal support when they could not access it themselves. They will now have to access Service Canada to get help, which is simply not a solution.

Even worse, some of these veterans, who are very close to getting their pensions after 10 years of service, are being discharged from the service so they do not qualify for their pensions.

Meanwhile, MPs – including you, Mr. Hiebert – will receive a handsome pension after six years of service, starting at the age of 55. The average annual pension in 2011-2012 for MPs was $58,051.

This attitude towards veterans makes it hard for me to believe that you and your party sincerely care about the well-being of others, in particular those who have served this country and put their lives on the line.

Recent polls clearly show the vast majority of Canadians feel that we have a moral duty to ensure those who have served us live a dignified life post-service, which includes access to assistance when required.

It is time for the Conservatives to start reflecting the values and morals of Canadian citizens.

Pamela Lockhart, White Rock



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