MP applauds proposed Veterans benefits

MP Mark Strahl supports plan to create a new lifetime benefit for Veterans.

Ottawa- Chilliwack-Fraser Canyon MP, Mark Strahl applauded an announcement by the Honourable Erin O’Toole, Minister of Veterans Affairs to create a new lifetime benefit for Veterans. The Retirement Income Security Benefit (RISB) would provide a monthly income support payment for moderately to severely disabled Veterans after the age of 65.

“The Retirement Income Security Benefit represents our Government’s continued efforts to ensure Veterans and their families receive the lifelong support and services they need,” said Strahl.

The RISB would begin at age 65 when the Earnings Loss Benefit upon which many moderately to severely disabled Veterans rely ends. It would ensure that an eligible Veteran’s total income after the age of 65 is at least 70 per cent of what she or he received in financial benefits from Veterans Affairs.

Monthly payments would be calculated on a case-by-case basis, taking into account how much the Veteran was receiving before age 65 and other sources of income he or she may have beyond the age of 65.

Speaking to the announcement of the creation of a new lifetime benefit for Veterans, Guy Parent, Canada’s Veterans Ombudsman said, “The Retirement Income Security Benefit meets the intent of my recommendation to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs on the most urgent New Veterans Charter shortcoming: after age 65 financial support. I congratulate the Minister of Veterans Affairs for his leadership on this issue and I encourage all parliamentarians to pass this new pension benefit without delay.”

Minister O’Toole, recognizing the complexity of financial benefits available for moderately to severely disable Veterans pledged, as part of a continued commitment to Veteran-centric care, to examine ways to combine new and existing supports into a single monthly pension for Veterans.