Why make RCMP Veterans go through this?

Ottawa - March 19, 2013

As you know, last May the Federal Court ruled that the offset of Pension Act disability benefits from the Canadian Forces members’ group insurance plan (the Service Income Security Insurance Plan [SISIP] - Long Term Disability Plan), contravened the SISIP policy.

This means that the Court confirmed that disability pensions are not income, but rather compensation for pain and suffering. Therefore, the disability pension amounts cannot be considered in the calculation of the income replacement benefits provided under group insurance plans.

I am bringing this issue up today, because, what is essentially the same practice is still impacting RCMP Veterans. What’s more, a lengthy legal process will likely take place if the Government does not put an end to this unfair practice for RCMP Veterans.

Under a different insurance company, RCMP members have access to similar income replacement benefits. Regrettably, their Pension Act disability benefits continue to be deducted from their income replacement benefits.

This offset of disabled Veterans’ long term disability benefits is unfair, no matter whether it concerns Veterans who served with the Canadian Forces or the RCMP.

This is about treating the men and women who served this country fairly. The Government, knowing the issue is the same, has the opportunity to act swiftly this time, and avoid dragging this out for RCMP Veterans.

I have raised this issue with RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson, and requested that actions be pursued to address it in a timely matter. Commissioner Paulson informed me that a copy of our correspondence was provided to the Honourable Vic Toews, Minister of Public Safety, for his information and consideration.

It would be very unfortunate to see the Government miss this opportunity to settle and avoid another lengthy legal process with all its inherent costs.

Guy

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Comments

Jacques said:

Je fais miens les propos de Murray Scott cité dans ce blogue le 28 mars 2013. J'ai l'impression que nous les ELB du VAC sommes des laissé pour compte en matière d'équité face à la rétro-action des sommes injustement déduites. Pourquoi personne ne répond à nos intérogations? Est-ce que nos questions en matière de rétro sont illégitimes? Quand le bureau du ministre nous répond, malheureusement c'est en langue de bois propre au politiciens! Si le ministère à déjà décidé de ne pas donner de rétro au ELB, pourquoi ne pas nous en informer clairement. Ne méritons nous pas au moins cela? En tout respect. Jacques St-Amand

April 4, 2013 10:25 AM

Scott said:

It is all fine and well that SISIP is slowly getting worked out...but what about those of us in Rehab that have never had SISIP and had an off-set for many years have we been forgotten? We did not get Earnings Loss because our pension was deducted. Yes they stopped the claw-back but what about the years that we got nothing because of the claw-back? Has the Ombudsman office answered any complaints with respect to compensation for those of us that got nothing because of the off-set? Are we not entitled to a retro-active amount as well? Are we the injured in rehab the forgotten ones? Mr. Stoffer asked the Ministers office about our retro amounts and he was told that there was no interest in providing the injured Veterans their well deserved compensation? Guy have you asked the question? Are we the Veterans in Rehab no longer important...I see you running to join the bandwagon for the RCMP but what about those of us that got nothing for many years because of the claw-back? Murray Scott

March 28, 2013 3:54 PM

RJ Smith said:

Hi, Is there any news on retro for VAC ELB??

March 27, 2013 1:42 PM

h omotani said:

Please politicians,give them the right to have what is rightfully theirs,they are true Canadians who served all of us the veterans deserve to be treated better than this

March 21, 2013 4:41 PM

terence graham said:

i am currently on the cf rehab program since 2007..last october my offset was swiftly stopped and fixed.i wonder why the 3000 of us on this program are not being discussed about giving us our pension back too like the sisip gang.if ithats true then go rcmp!!!

March 20, 2013 8:19 AM

Scott said:

Dear VAC Ombudsman, Veterans of Canada, and all those concerned, The very same monthly pension claw backs affecting the RCMP, have also been taken from clients of the VAC Income Loss Benefits program, since 2006. It was not until after the decision was rendered on the SISIP Federal class action lawsuit, that VAC stopped the continuation of the very same practise. To this very day, VAC has not indicated any interest in returning the monthly pension clawbacks to the affected clients. I have personally started legal discussions and negotiations with a law firm (name temporarily withheld), in regards to pursuing the retroactive back pay being awarded and returned to the clients affected. It is my hope at this time, that this article will be granted the opportunity to be posted as well. This will definitely assist in creating further awareness of the practises kept hidden behind closed doors for so long. Sincere appreciation and regards, Scott.

March 19, 2013 3:23 PM