Supporting Veterans & CF Personnel

On April 10th, Governor General and Commander in Chief David Johnston attended an important ceremony of remembrance at the memorial site in Thélus, France to honour those soldiers who fought and died in the Battle of Vimy Ridge, April, 1917.
He said:
“The road that passes by this memorial is often called the “Canadian gunners’ road,” after the members of the Canadian Corps Artillery who fell during the Vimy operations of April, 1917.
It is so important that we remember their service and their sacrifice, because the artillery corps played a critical role in the Battle of Vimy Ridge. Having learned hard lessons earlier in the war, Canadians took a new approach to artillery fire during these operations.
Rather than alternating between shelling and ground attacks, Canadian gunners and infantry members coordinated their assault for greater effectiveness. With remarkable precision, soldiers moved ahead 90 metres every three minutes, under cover of their own guns. This coupling of artillery fire and troop advance took great courage, but it enabled the Canadians to progress and dig in before the enemy could regroup and counterattack.
This innovative tactic was one of the keys to success at Vimy. This memorial exists to honour those who served, and to remember their enormous sacrifice.”
The bravery and dedication of our veterans inspires us all and it is our responsibility to ensure that our soldiers and our veterans are properly taken care of.
Two recent announcements confirm our support for our men and women who serve and have served in uniform.
On April 10th, the Government announced an investment of $112 million to enhance the minimum benefits paid under the Canadian Forces (CF) Long Term Disability (LTD) program to medically released CF personnel. These enhancements are now in line with the Earning Loss Benefits (ELB) offered by Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) to disabled veterans.
Retroactive to October 3rd, 2011 our ill and injured veterans will receive a minimum pre-tax income of $40,000 a year while continuing to have access to vocational rehabilitation training. This financial support will help ill and injured CF Veterans focus on getting better.
On April 3, the Government also announced a new component of the “Cutting Red Tape for Veterans” initiative to make it easier for Veterans to access the supports they require to remain independent. 
Veterans will receive up-front payments for ground maintenance and housekeeping services offered under the Veterans Independence Program (VIP). Veterans will no longer have to submit receipts for these two popular services. This eliminates cumbersome paperwork for approximately 100,000 Veterans and their families and puts money into their hands faster, so they can remain independent in their own homes.
As Canadians, we feel strongly about acknowledging those who fought for our freedoms, not just through ceremonial events like those in France but also in the way we care for and support our CF personnel and Veterans.
Just as we continue to honour them for their enormous sacrifice, these improved initiatives ensure our soldiers and our Veterans receive the care and support they need.
For more information on the Canadian Forces Long term Disability program, CF members can go to www.sisip.ca/en/Insurance_e/ltd_e.asp . For more information on the Veterans Independence Program and other services and benefits available to Veterans, please visit www.veterans.gc.ca .
If you have any questions or comments regarding issues related to the federal government, please do not hesitate to contact me at [email protected] or by phone at 250 470-5075.
Ron Cannan is the Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country

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About the Author

The Honourable Ron Cannan was first elected as Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country in January, 2006. He was subsequently elected in the 2008 and 2011 federal elections. He is a member of the Conservative Caucus.

On September 13th, 2012 Ron was summoned to be a member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and will provide advice to the Government as a member of the Priorities and Planning Sub-Committee on Government Administration.

Ron successfully uses his experience and knowledge as a long-time Kelowna City Councillor and regional government representative to be an effective and enthusiastic champion for his riding and his constituents.

His greatest satisfaction comes from helping local organizations and citizens obtain the support they require from Ottawa. 

He is also dedicated to doing what it takes to ensure that the growing and vibrant communities in his riding continue to thrive and prosper.

He is proud of the partnership and cooperation between federal, provincial and municipal governments which have resulted in significant infrastructure projects including upgrades to Highway 97, expansion of the Kelowna International Airport, a new horticulture strategy for fruit growers, obtaining a full service passport office for Kelowna and addressing critical economic issues such as labour skills shortages.

He works closely with the local Chambers of Commerce and once a year arranges meetings for the Chamber with Cabinet Ministers and senior policy staff in Ottawa to move forward important local issues such as crime prevention and labour skills shortages.

He is also an ardent champion for important community initiatives including homelessness, mental health, women’s resources, and support of arts and culture.

On Parliament Hill, Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee on International Trade since 2006 supporting initiatives which will broaden the economic opportunities for local businesses and businesses Canada-wide.

In previous parliamentary sessions Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee for Government Operations and Estimates, Veteran’s Affairs, Human Resources and Social Development, the Scrutiny of Regulations Committee, and the Standing Committee for Fisheries and Oceans.

Ron is also involved in a variety of inter-parliamentary organizations: he is Vice Chair of the Canada-US Inter-Parliamentary Group, and a member of the Canada-Taiwan Friendship group.

As Chair of the Conservative Wine Caucus, Ron works with his colleagues across the country to promote the wine regions of Canada.  Ron tabled Motion 218(formerly Motion 601) which supports direct to consumer purchasing of Canadian wine. His motion became Bill C-311, sponsored by MP Dan Albas, seconded by Ron, which was passed into law on June 28th, 2012.

Prior to entering politics, Ron developed a diverse business background as a small business owner and had several years experience in marketing and sales management working with corporations including Coca-Cola, Costco and Corus Entertainment.

Very active in his community, Ron has been a Director for both the Central Okanagan Regional District and the Central Okanagan Hospital Board. Ron also served on the Okanagan University College Access to Training Advisory Board, the Glenmore Elementary School Parents Advisory Council, and the Kelowna Christian School Fund Raising Committee. He was co-founder of the Okanagan Volunteer Festival. Currently Ron is a member of the Sunrise Rotary Club of Kelowna and, along with his wife Cindy, was the honorary Chair of the 2012 Canadian Cancer Society Daffodil Ball.

Ron lives a family-oriented and active lifestyle with his wife Cindy. He is the proud father of three daughters and grandfather to three grandsons. His hobbies include music and sports.

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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