Editorial

Fix it and fast
Editorial

Fix it and fast

None of this should have happened, and it should have been fixed years ago. Late last year, Veterans Affairs Canada revealed that some veterans received lower disability pension payments than they should have, owing to an accounting error made by VAC between 2003 and 2010. The error affected some 270,000 veterans, RCMP members and their survivors. Under the Pension Act, annual increases in disability pension amounts are driven either by change in the consumer price index or change in the average composite wage—whichever results in the greatest benefit to the veteran. One factor in the wage calculation is the personal tax exemption amount under the Income Tax Act. In the early 2000s, the federal government changed the personal tax exemption. In 2002, the greatest benefit to the vetera...
HomeEquity Bank proudly announces a partnership to empower Royal Canadian Legion members
Editorial

HomeEquity Bank proudly announces a partnership to empower Royal Canadian Legion members

HomeEquity Bank has joined The Royal Canadian Legion Member Benefits Package (MBP), which means more variety and choice for members and their families. HomeEquity Bank, provider of the CHIP Reverse Mortgage, is a federally regulated Canadian bank that allows Canadian homeowners who are 55 or over to access up to 55 percent of the value of their home tax-free by tapping into that equity while still owning the home and living there. Through this partnership, HomeEquity Bank provides special benefits to Legion members and their families. Like many Canadians, you may be concerned about carrying debt into your retirement years, or wondering whether your savings will stretch far enough. HomeEquity Bank empowers Canadians 55-plus by offering an option that allows them to finance their retire...
Schooling soldiers
Editorial

Schooling soldiers

Canada, military service and education go hand-in-hand. Every phase of a soldier’s training represents some form of education, of course. But that training is designed to build a successful army. What about preparing soldiers to succeed as civilians? In 1916, Canadian soldiers fighting at the front and training in England began to ask for educational support in anticipation of postwar life. As demand grew, a government-funded initiative, called the Khaki University of Canada, was started (see page 28). By the end, tens of thousands of Canadian veterans came home with newfound skills and knowledge, in addition to what they learned about warfare. Following the Second World War, with financial aid from the Veterans Rehabilitation Act, 54,000 veterans went to university. In the 1970s, the ...
A sign of service
Editorial

A sign of service

Last September, the federal government announced it is reinstating service cards for Canada’s veterans, following considerable demand from military members, veterans and veteran-support organizations. This is a very good and overdue move, but it could go further. The Veteran’s Service Card (VSC) is being issued to eligible Canadian Armed Forces members when they leave the service, as long as they have completed basic training and been honourably released. It is a joint initiative by the CAF and Veterans Affairs Canada. The card is another way to help veterans stay connected to military and veteran support programs and keep connected to the CAF. It includes the cardholder’s photograph, service number, rank on release, name and years of service (but not date of birth). Importantly, it sa...
A call to remember
Editorial

A call to remember

More than one million Canadians and Newfoundlanders served in the Second World War. More than 45,000 were killed and another 55,000 were wounded. Only 41,100 of them remained as of March 2017, according to Veterans Affairs Canada. Nearly all are now in their 90s. Many, if not most, Second World War veterans were reluctant to recount their wartime experiences (except while sitting with their comrades in Legion halls across the country), choosing instead to suppress the horror of it all as they built new postwar lives back home. Some, of course, did put pen to paper after returning. One of Canada’s best known is Farley Mowat, whose And No Birds Sang and The Regiment are first-hand accounts of his experiences with the 1st Canadian Infantry Division in Italy. Legion Magazine’s own library ...
Hearing-loss aid improved
Editorial

Hearing-loss aid improved

Hearing loss and tinnitus are common disabilities among veterans, and understandably so. Continuous exposure to loud noise—the whomp of a 25-pounder Howitzer, the rat-a-tat-tat of an M1919 Browning, the engine-room clatter of a frigate, the roar of a CF-18—all can have an irreversible impact on a person’s hearing. Ear protection protocols have come a long way since the days of sticking your fingers (or cotton batting) in your ears as field guns are fired. Today’s soldiers are expected to wear hearing protection, although a recent study shows that only about one third always do. A significant number report that they never do. Nearly everyone who serves in the military “will be exposed to hazardous noise levels at some point in their career,” according to a report in Military Medical Rese...
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