New kids on the veterans block

0

The NATO Veterans Organization of Canada (NVOC) consist of all members of the Canadian Forces who have served or are serving after formation of NATO to the present day. NVOC exists to be a voice for these veterans. Until the present no one has been speaking for these veterans.

The WW2 and Korean veterans have been and are being looked after – by the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) plus three” traditional” Canadian veterans organizations – the Royal Canadian Legion (RCL), Army, Navy and Airforce Veterans (ANAVETS) and the National Council of Veteran Associations in Canada (NCVA).

After the Korean War, the “Modern Day” veteran’s organizations are fragmented into two Peace keeping Organizations (Canadian Association of Veterans in UN Peacekeeping (CAVUNP), Canadian Peacekeeping Veterans Association (CPVA) and the Gulf War Veterans Association of Canada (GWVA) – plus a myriad of smaller regimental, squadron and ship social groups.

In addition the three traditional veterans groups no longer have a base of veterans due to changing demographics – fewer WW2 and Korean veterans are left to be members. The result is these three traditional veterans groups are all composed of over 70 % civilian associates.

There has been no one in Canada speaking for the post Korean veterans – no organization composed of these veterans. The result has been a New Veterans Charter which in simplest terms is outsourcing of veterans benefits and services. Veteran’s hospitals have been closed right across Canada. Veterans now receive a “pay out” by VAC instead of a pension. They are given an insurance policy for bodily injury instead of facilities by VAC to look after them – no long term care for a Post Korean veteran – no hospitals – no beds.

   The new Integrated Personnel Support Centers are a welcome addition to assist soldiers and their families cope with injuries, disabilities, addictions and mental health problems. These new facilities are on military bases hopefully close to those who may need them. Unfortunately they are not transparent; they are out of sight from scrutiny and should not have been required in the first place. If short sighted governments had not been closing down all the Veterans Hospitals across the country Canada would always have a network in place for our veterans   In the so called veterans hospitals that still exist today, like the Perley and Rideau Veterans Health Center are Veterans Hospitals in name only and veterans are on excessively long waiting lists and compete for beds with civilians. Is that fair?

In Canada today – the so called “Modern Day Veterans” are becoming militant. These people who served and sacrificed for their country as NATO Cold War Warriors stationed in Europe or Peacekeeping in some pretty difficult conditions to outright war in Afghanistan. Who is speaking for them? The NATO Veterans Organization of Canada (NVOC) is speaking. NVOC are the “new kids on the veterans block”.

NVOC was granted Letters Patent under the Canada Corporations Act on October 1, 2010. The Letters Patent give NVOC a national charter to represent NATO, Merchant Navy and RCMP veterans. The creation of NVOC provides Canada with a new veterans organization to speak on veterans affairs and issues, to remember, preserve, protect and value our military heritage, to work towards veterans benefits and to stand united “shoulder to shoulder” with the other national veterans associations.

Canada is a founding, charter member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) from its concept after World War Two. The members of NVOC are thus, the veterans of the modern era, that period of our history from the end of the Second World War to the present day.

While it is well known there are no more WWI veterans and the ranks of WWII veterans are rapidly dwindling, it has been estimated that there are thousands of living Canadians who served in NATO during its lifetime in addition to the many thousands of others who served in our Merchant Navy and the RCMP. Canada has thousands of other Canadian Servicemen and women still serving in and with NATO and presently in Afghanistan.

NVOC is “the voice of today’s veterans” and intends to render support to the spectrum of veterans needs from recognition, privacy, restitution, compensation, claims for long term medical care. The recognition of the achievements and the celebration of the many contributions that Canadian Veterans have made to make Canada a free nation among the nations of the world is a driving force of NVOC.

Further information about the NATO Veterans Organization of Canada can be obtained from the NVOC website at <http://natoveterans.org/>. The website also provides NVOC points of contact for media and press inquiries

Gord Jenkins

National President

NATO Veterans Organization of Canada

35 Biscayne Cr.

Ottawa ON

K2E 5R9

CANADA

gordjenkins@sympatico.ca

613 723 1581