MP Bob Zimmer and the Conservative government go to great lengths to convince Canadians they care about our veterans. Yet actions speak louder than words and they continue to neglect our veterans while using them as political props.
Consider this: the Conservatives spent $750,000 dollars and 5 years dragging our veterans through the courts over their pensions. They fought tooth and nail to prevent them from getting what they earned and deserve. The government lost that battle when the Federal Court, in a stinging rebuke, ruled in favour of our disabled veterans.
Then consider the situation of veterans who pass away: the `Last Post Fund` is supposed to pay up to $3600 dollars to help cover veterans’ funeral costs. This amount is already inadequate to meet the actual costs of a funeral. But to make the situation worse, the Conservative government’s rejection rate of over 60% since 2006 for applications to the Fund is staggering. Likewise, we are now learning from media reports that funeral operators from across Canada are absorbing the costs because many of the veterans and their families have been left twisting in the wind by this government.
Imagine how much more decent and honourable it would have been had the Conservatives spent that $750,000 dollars to help pay for the funeral costs of our veterans instead of fighting them in court over their pensions.
When Mr. Zimmer brags about their record on veterans, remind him of the truth. No amount of government spin can change that reality.
Sean Casey, MP
Liberal Party of Canada Veterans Affairs Critic