Boundary Creek Times editorial – Nov. 14: Battle goes on

Far too often, especially in rural areas, returning veterans face obstacles to their reintegration into life on the home front.

Remembrance Day is over, but for many the battle continues.

Veterans returning from deployment face the challenge of transitioning back into a society that often has little obvious connection with their wartime experiences.

A recent article by Minister of Veterans Affairs Julian Fantino in the Huffington Post pointed out that Veterans Affairs Canada’s budget today is over $3.5 billion. In 2005, it was $2.8 billion.

But Michael Blais, founder of the Canadian Veterans Advocacy, says the Canadian government is not showing the same dignity to the country’s injured soldiers as it once did.

There are reports that veterans are often discharged before their benefits have begun.

There are 40,000 Canadian men and woman recently returned from Afghanistan.

The Legion is there but, as Greenwood Branch #155 president Bob Walker said last week, “A lot of the younger ones (veterans) that come back from Afghanistan and that, don’t want anything to do with the military. And they consider the Legion to be part of the military.”

Programs exist, such as the Veterans Transition Program where veterans are helped to work through their experiences and re-orient themselves by other vets and specially trained psychologists.

A CBC article last June listed four major issues facing Canadian veterans today.

• The disability pension was eliminated, replaced with a lump-sum disability award. Blais says the lump-sum payment can actually harm an injured soldier, because they are receiving a large amount of money at a time when they may not be equipped to deal with it.

• Homelessness.

• Exposure to chemicals in the course of training and combat.

• Post-traumatic stress disorder and mental health issues.

It is our obligation to ensure that these men and women are supported when they return home. Lest we forget must be more than something quoted only one day each year.

 

Just Posted

Kootenays unemployment rate best in B.C.

In one year, the region has gone from highest unemployment rate to lowest, at 3.1 per cent

Giant rotating ice disk forms in Maine river

Ice disk that is roughly 100 yards wide has formed in the Presumpscot River

SPCA seeks help for Shelby the dog

Cranbrook branch seeks help with costs for a Shih Tzu suffering from a number of medical issues.

Razor burn: Gillette ad stirs online uproar

A Gillette ad for men invoking the #MeToo movement is sparking intense online backlash

Feds poised to bolster RCMP accountability with external committee

Long-anticipated move is the latest attempt at rebuilding the force following years of sagging morale

Canada needs a digital ID system, bankers association says

The Department of Finance last week officially launched its public consultation on the merits of open banking

Indigenous energy summit includes session on pipeline ownership options

Steven Saddleback of the Indian Resource Council says a session will feature presentations on financing models

Japanese grand champion Kisenosato retires from sumo

The 32-year-old Kisenosato was the first Japanese-born wrestler in 19 years to gain promotion to sumo’s highest rank

UPDATE: Accused B.C. high school killer found fit to stand trial

Gabriel Klein is accused in the 2016 stabbing death of Letisha Reimer at Abbotsford Senior Secondary

Right-wing, neo-Nazi, white supremacist groups an increasing concern: Goodale

Ten people died in April 2018 when Alek Minassian allegedly drove a rental van down the busy stretch in Toronto

Most Read