WINNIPEG – After a decade of Stephen Harper’s neglect, Liberals will make major new investments to give veterans the future we owe them, said MaryAnn Mihychuk, Liberal candidate for Kildonan-St. Paul.
“For ten years, the Harper Conservatives have draped themselves in the flag, and then turned their backs on veterans. Our women and men in uniform put their lives on the line for our country at a high personal cost,” said Ms. Mihychuk. “Speaking with veterans in Kildonan-St. Paul, it’s clear that the overwhelming majority feel disrespected and abandoned by Harper when they return home. We have a social responsibility for Canadian veterans and their families – an obligation that absolutely must be met with the utmost respect and gratitude.”
A Liberal government will:
- re-establish lifelong pensions for our injured veterans, and increase the value of the disability award;
- invest $25 million to expand access to the Permanent Impairment Allowance;
- invest $40 million to increase the Earnings Loss Benefit to 90 percent of pre-release salary;
- invest $80 million per year to create a new Veterans Education Benefit that provides full support for the cost of up to four years of college, university, or technical education;
- invest $100 million per year to expand support for families of veterans;
- increase the veteran survivor’s pension amount from 50 percent to 70 percent;
- double funding to the Last Post Fund to ensure that veterans receive a dignified burial;
- re-open the nine Veterans Affairs service offices closed by the Harper Conservatives;
- fully implement all of the Auditor General’s recommendations on enhancing mental health service delivery to veterans;
- hire 400 new service delivery staff, including new case managers at Veterans Affairs; and
- budget $20 million to create two new centres of excellence in veterans’ care.
“Canadians rightly expect that our obligation to our veterans will be honoured,” continued Ms. Mihychuk. “Veterans have spent far too long fighting the Harper Conservatives for the support and compensation that they have earned. A Liberal government led by Justin Trudeau will ensure that veterans in our four communities, and right across the country, can confidently look forward to the future they are owed by a grateful nation.”