Stakeholder Engagement Highlights Alberta

The views expressed in this summary are those of individuals and do not represent the views of the Veterans Ombudsman and his office.

On March 6th and 8th, 2017, the Ombudsman held stakeholder meetings in both Calgary and Edmonton with representatives from various groups and organizations that support Veterans and their families.

Stakeholder Engagement Highlights Calgary, AB – March 6, 2017

Highlights:

Service Delivery Challenges:

  • There's a lack of centralized information for Veterans and their families.
  • There are long wait times for adjudication and Blue Cross reimbursements.
  • Many are having difficulty finding health practitioners in remote regions.

Program Challenges:

  • Transition needs to be addressed much earlier in the process and information provided in more meaningful pieces.
  • More tools are needed to help Veterans find suitable employment.
  • Concerns were also expressed about the wait times for the VAC 1-800 Assistance Service.
  • Need for better monitoring to identify Veterans in crisis and provide support.

Attendees:

  • RCAF Association
  • Canadian Legacy Project
  • ED MFRC
  • Naval Vets Association
  • Calgary Legion
  • OSI Clinic
  • Alpha House
  • Can Praxis
  • Prospect
  • Colonel Belcher Facility
  • OSISS

Stakeholder Engagement Highlights Edmonton, AB – March 8, 2017

Highlights:

Transition:

  • Reservists are falling through the cracks; they are not recognized in the system the same way and are often not provided with the same information and briefings as the Regular Forces due to the nature of their service.
  • Spouses of Veterans need more help in finding employment
  • More face time is needed to guide Veterans in the transition process.
  • A Veteran identification card is needed and would help recognize and track Veterans.
  • Benefits are complex and difficult to understand.

Wait Times

  • Time to adjudicate claims as well as wait times for treatment at OSI Clinics need to be addressed.

Family:

  • Concerns were raised regarding the availability of therapy for releasing members and their families. A lack of awareness and understanding about the services provided by VAC Assistance Services was noted
  • Families don't have access to mental health diagnosis in their own right

Attendees:

  • City of Edmonton
  • 700 Wing RCAF
  • Kipnes Centre for Veterans
  • OSISS
  • JPSU
  • 3 Division HQ
  • RCMP
  • Edmonton Centre MP
  • MFRC
  • RCMP Veterans Association
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