The Royal Canadian Legion urges Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) and the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) to act swiftly to implement recommendations made by the House of Commons Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs (ACVA) to improve the backlog of disability benefit claims. With nearly 20,000 applications still in limbo, Veterans face continued frustration and despair, as many wait in dire need of the disability benefits and supports they need.
The ACVA report, Clearing the Jam: Addressing the Backlog of Disability Benefit Claims at Veterans Affairs Canada
, presented Veterans Affairs Canada with 16 recommendations
to address the backlog. A number of measures, if adopted immediately, will go far in alleviating the unprocessed claims — measures such as hiring and retaining employees to process claims; improving transfer of medical records between CAF and VAC to expedite claims; automatic approval of applications for conditions attributed to service; plus automatic pre-approval for all other disability claims. Action on these recommendations, in addition to long term measures to address underlying issues that contribute to the backlog, are needed now.
In our advocacy role, the Legion brings forward issues that affect the wellbeing of Veterans, identifies challenges and presses for change to ensure that Veterans and their families receive the care and benefits they deserve. We were grateful for the opportunity to appear before ACVA to offer our input on the backlog. Canada’s Veterans have been waiting too long for the disability benefits they need and rightly deserve. The recommendations to Veterans Affairs Canada are clear. The time for action is now.
If you or a Veteran you know needs assistance with a VAC disability benefit claim, the Legion can help. Contact a Legion Command Service Officer for more information.
About The Royal Canadian Legion
Founded in 1925, the Legion is Canada’s largest Veteran support and community service organization. We are a non-profit organization with a national reach across Canada as well as branches in the U.S., Europe and Mexico. With close to 260,000 members, many of whom volunteer an extraordinary amount of time to their branches, our strength is in our numbers.
Public Relations / Media Inquiries: PublicRelations@Legion.ca / media inquiries