Our Loss and Our Gain

Ottawa – March 14, 2014

By now, most of you would be aware that Gary Walbourne, my trusted Deputy, has been appointed as the new Ombudsman for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces (DND/CAF).  For those of you who have had the pleasure to work with or to know Gary, you would agree that it was a wise choice on the part of the Minister of National Defence.  As much as we will miss him here, we know that his caring approach and his knowledge of Veterans issues and Ombudsmanship will stand him in good stead in exercising his new mandate.

This new appointment comes at a very opportune time, since my Office recently approached the DND/CAF ombudsman’s office to suggest that we put a joint team together to review, analyse and recommend improvements to transition programs for members of the Canadian Armed Forces facing release.

I expect that shortly after Gary is in position, we will meet officially to discuss how best to proceed in order to review the existing process and recommend the best possible approach for a successful transition from the Forces to civilian life.

As Gary has excelled here, and earned the trust and confidence of all members of our team, I have no doubt that he will accomplish the same with his new team at the DND/CAF Ombudsman’s office. I look forward to the opportunity to work together to ensure that our Sailors, Soldiers, Airmen and Airwomen are treated with respect, dignity and fairness from cradle to grave.

Congratulations Gary and the best wishes for a successful tenure.

Guy Parent
Veterans Ombudsman

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