Author Topic: Is the system Broken?  (Read 8484 times)

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Offline upandatom

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Is the system Broken?
« on: March 16, 2016, 10:24:14 »
I have a few issues with VAC, and this is how I find the system is broken.

1. Zero Accountability- If files are lost, taking to long, there is no internal way to have them sped up or answers provided. This includes lost mail etc.
- My case in point, PTSD reassess was supposed to start Oct 15, I never received the paperwork to begin this, I called in, said it was on the way to me, a week later same response, finally I started to call in daily. It took them 8-10 weeks to realise I was never sent the original paperwork. So they faxed it to me. Infuriating to me that I was getting fed the blanket answer that it is on the way. Was I able to get an answer or reasoning as to why, no, i was just belt fed the BS Answer.

2. Changing the rules- "The 16 week start to finish goal does not work for us, so it is 16 weeks when it hits Step 3" Its not about what works for you, its about what works for the servicemen and women that need the services VAC provides. If you are having issues hiring, or retention, then look at why you can not hire, solve those problems, do not come back and cause us more grief or wait times. That is in no way fair to us.

3. The reassessment. Why is this goal 16 weeks. We have already been awarded the condition, It should not have to go through the whole process again. You sent us the paperwork to have us fill it out. With direct questions for what you are looking for, with direct answers. Each condition has a different questionnaire, with spots for the exact wording and responses you want. Realistically this should be wham bam thank you mam. This is not an initial application, VAC has already awarded a medical condition, now its the time when they figure out the severity of it and award accordingly.

Anyone else feel like the system has major issues?
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Offline CombatMacgyver

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2016, 11:32:19 »
I have a few issues with VAC, and this is how I find the system is broken.

1. Zero Accountability- If files are lost, taking to long, there is no internal way to have them sped up or answers provided. This includes lost mail etc.
- My case in point, PTSD reassess was supposed to start Oct 15, I never received the paperwork to begin this, I called in, said it was on the way to me, a week later same response, finally I started to call in daily. It took them 8-10 weeks to realise I was never sent the original paperwork. So they faxed it to me. Infuriating to me that I was getting fed the blanket answer that it is on the way. Was I able to get an answer or reasoning as to why, no, i was just belt fed the BS Answer.

2. Changing the rules- "The 16 week start to finish goal does not work for us, so it is 16 weeks when it hits Step 3" Its not about what works for you, its about what works for the servicemen and women that need the services VAC provides. If you are having issues hiring, or retention, then look at why you can not hire, solve those problems, do not come back and cause us more grief or wait times. That is in no way fair to us.

3. The reassessment. Why is this goal 16 weeks. We have already been awarded the condition, It should not have to go through the whole process again. You sent us the paperwork to have us fill it out. With direct questions for what you are looking for, with direct answers. Each condition has a different questionnaire, with spots for the exact wording and responses you want. Realistically this should be wham bam thank you mam. This is not an initial application, VAC has already awarded a medical condition, now its the time when they figure out the severity of it and award accordingly.

Anyone else feel like the system has major issues?

My claim for a clear and obvious permanent injury took two years before I got any acknowledgement out of them.  The term "system" in their case is an adverb, not a noun.

Offline Wookilar

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2016, 11:34:20 »
I have a few issues with VAC, and this is how I find the system is broken.

I am in no way disagreeing with you on this one, but I do have a few points  [:(

1. Zero Accountability- If files are lost, taking to long, there is no internal way to have them sped up or answers provided. This includes lost mail etc.
- My case in point, PTSD reassess was supposed to start Oct 15, I never received the paperwork to begin this, I called in, said it was on the way to me, a week later same response, finally I started to call in daily. It took them 8-10 weeks to realise I was never sent the original paperwork. So they faxed it to me. Infuriating to me that I was getting fed the blanket answer that it is on the way. Was I able to get an answer or reasoning as to why, no, i was just belt fed the BS Answer.

When I have put in for reassessments, I just downloaded the forms from My Vac account, filled them out and uploaded them on the same day. The processing was extremely fast. I haven't reassessed my PTSD, so I can't comment on that specifically, but my Chap 17 injuries went pretty quick.

2. Changing the rules- "The 16 week start to finish goal does not work for us, so it is 16 weeks when it hits Step 3" Its not about what works for you, its about what works for the servicemen and women that need the services VAC provides. If you are having issues hiring, or retention, then look at why you can not hire, solve those problems, do not come back and cause us more grief or wait times. That is in no way fair to us.

Agreed. Why even have time frames? I always make a point of this when I am talking to anyone beyond the NCC.

3. The reassessment. Why is this goal 16 weeks. We have already been awarded the condition, It should not have to go through the whole process again. You sent us the paperwork to have us fill it out. With direct questions for what you are looking for, with direct answers. Each condition has a different questionnaire, with spots for the exact wording and responses you want. Realistically this should be wham bam thank you mam. This is not an initial application, VAC has already awarded a medical condition, now its the time when they figure out the severity of it and award accordingly.

In my opinion? Because they were lazy when they set up the system and turnaround times and had no idea what they were getting into. The 16-week limit hasn't worked for years upon years.


Anyone else feel like the system has major issues?

I've been dealing with VAC for 17 years now, for 8 separate injuries. I have found that now that I am out, the processing has generally slowed down. From my experience, in speaking with my Voc Rehab case manager, a lot of that delay comes in with dealing with a multitude of civilian medical agencies (none of which give a damn about VAC) instead of just getting a new version of our med docs from med records.

Don't get me wrong, I complain bitterly when crap takes too long. I currently have a letter being checked over by a lawyer friend of mine in order to force their hand on an issue I've been having with Blue Cross for almost 3 years now that they are refusing to acknowledge let alone fix.

When it comes to general paperwork: keep track of dates, take down names, fire and forget. I find using My VAC account does help in their response time.

I know how frustrating it is. If you have any specific questions that maybe I can help with, send me a pm and we'll chat.
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Offline recceguy

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2016, 15:29:37 »
I have a few issues with VAC, and this is how I find the system is broken.

1. Zero Accountability- If files are lost, taking to long, there is no internal way to have them sped up or answers provided. This includes lost mail etc.
- My case in point, PTSD reassess was supposed to start Oct 15, I never received the paperwork to begin this, I called in, said it was on the way to me, a week later same response, finally I started to call in daily. It took them 8-10 weeks to realise I was never sent the original paperwork. So they faxed it to me. Infuriating to me that I was getting fed the blanket answer that it is on the way. Was I able to get an answer or reasoning as to why, no, i was just belt fed the BS Answer.

2. Changing the rules- "The 16 week start to finish goal does not work for us, so it is 16 weeks when it hits Step 3" Its not about what works for you, its about what works for the servicemen and women that need the services VAC provides. If you are having issues hiring, or retention, then look at why you can not hire, solve those problems, do not come back and cause us more grief or wait times. That is in no way fair to us.

3. The reassessment. Why is this goal 16 weeks. We have already been awarded the condition, It should not have to go through the whole process again. You sent us the paperwork to have us fill it out. With direct questions for what you are looking for, with direct answers. Each condition has a different questionnaire, with spots for the exact wording and responses you want. Realistically this should be wham bam thank you mam. This is not an initial application, VAC has already awarded a medical condition, now its the time when they figure out the severity of it and award accordingly.

Anyone else feel like the system has major issues?

Welcome to VAC. Delay, Deny, Die.
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Offline upandatom

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2016, 09:37:20 »
Has anyone else noticed that the some members when you call in are also very rude, short, as if you are bothering them with inquiring?

On civilian side now I actually am team lead for a call in tech support team, If any of my team spoke to a customer like a NCC spoke to me they would not last very long in our company.
Even some office members and case managers are downright insulting as well.

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Offline rand_d

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2016, 12:42:20 »
I knew it was broken when I asked if I could apply for benefits due to adverse side affects resulting from my brain surgery and was told "No, it was YOUR choice to have brain surgery, the military is not responsible".

Offline Jay_N3000

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2016, 01:43:51 »
I feel like the whole system is broken.

My experience with trying for a whole year to get my CF98 for example was very stressful for me. 
Not only did I have to deal with consistent physical pain + some..  I had to also run around in a wild goose chase with my immediate COC + BOR just to get half answers.
Finally after so many attempts to find out where my CF98 went and why it was not signed by the leaving CO.. I got it last minute.  I took a deep sigh of relief and enjoyed a brief moment of fresh air for it.

But then it was not the last of my troubles.  Now I am dealing with
a BPSO Staff Member who I feel is trying his best to not "allow" me to go back to school & upgrade my education through SISIP Vocational Upgrading.
He first told me not to follow my pursuits of Hair Styling School and instead focus on Business Schooling.
Then after he told me to not think about schooling at all because he worries I have been out of school for a bit.
Well what am I to do??  The longer I wait, then it will be even LONGER I am out of school.  I want to upgrade my education as soon as possible, cause my HS education is not very advertising to prospective employers lol. 

At the end of the day this whole ordeal has me thinking... Maybe BPSO, the Caseworkers, SISIP and VAC are all secretly mandated to screw us over: THE CF/CAF Soldiers who signed on the dotted line to serve our Country FOR THEM!!!  Cause they don't really care about us!!!!!!

^ I feel they just want to save another buck, than help a Soldier get back on his feet and become a productive member of society again.

Yet for so many years I broke myself physically in uniform loyally and dutifully and.. I never asked for anything in return but to be properly fed and compensated for my efforts. 

And all I ask now.. for at the end of my military career after being medically released is; to have the chance to return to school without falling back into OSAP debt, successfully finish my schooling in 2 years and be back on my feet with at least a fighting chance in such a competitive job market out there. 

^ But day by day I am starting to feel that this is just the wishful thinking of an optimistic idealist man..

I am starting to realize we soldiers of the CF are often just left to the wolves by those who claim to "care" about our well being... so long as they can do it swiftly, silently and
without the light of the media shone on their faces......




« Last Edit: May 12, 2016, 01:47:29 by Jay_N3000 »

Offline recceguy

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2016, 12:10:00 »
Welcomed to reality 8)
“I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, or free to choose those who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind.”

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Offline upandatom

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #8 on: May 26, 2016, 14:30:48 »
Well,
As we go on, I am on my 4th Claim, with medical proof, and diligent medical records, I have not once had a claim completed in the Service Standard Timeframe.

All, have gone at least 5 Months, or Longer.

The system is a joke, and even more so with those two faced lying pricks at the helm.

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Offline gryphonv

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #9 on: May 26, 2016, 15:33:54 »
My first claim took a couple days shy of 16 weeks to get a decision letter. I was happy my claim was approved. Although no award was given at that time, they told me I would need to be further assessed by one of their doctors.

After 2 weeks I wrote in though the My Vac Account asking when to expect to be contacted since my acceptance letter stated there is nothing I need to do at this time but wait for them to contact me. Got a quick response saying I should get my acceptance letter in two weeks. So they failed in pretty basic reading comprehension. I had to call them and they told me to wait until June and if I haven't been contacted by then to give them another call. I asked once I get the assessment does the 16 week counter start over... and yes.

So I'm probably looking at a min of 18 more weeks before this claim is finalized, than probably 2-3 weeks to actually see any sort of award. 

I'm torn because my claim was accepted at first application (which is great), but I am probably looking at a min total of 36 weeks before this is finalized, much more likely in the 40+ week time frame.(which is horrible)

Over all I feel my claim was one of the simpler ones.

So that 16 week 'standard' is really a joke. They can meet it, but not actually meet it at the same time.

Offline the 48th regulator

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #10 on: May 26, 2016, 15:40:13 »
Well,
As we go on, I am on my 4th Claim, with medical proof, and diligent medical records, I have not once had a claim completed in the Service Standard Timeframe.

All, have gone at least 5 Months, or Longer.

The system is a joke, and even more so with those two faced lying pricks at the helm.

May I ask, have you called the Obudsman's office on this at all?

I know that I’m not perfect and that I don’t claim to be, so before you point your fingers make sure your hands are clean.

Offline Pieman

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #11 on: May 26, 2016, 17:21:55 »
Quote
So that 16 week 'standard' is really a joke. They can meet it, but not actually meet it at the same time.

Just FYI Revenue Canada makes the same 16 week claim when you refile etc.  The government knows the game of delay-delay-delay, and will play it when it suits their need. It's not the person on the other end who is trying to obstruct you, it's the policies and procedure they use to process cases. No point in fighting the person you are speaking to, they are not making any decisions.

The best way to beat the government bureaucrat is to beat them at their own game: First is have everything you need to apply and make sure there is no way they can come back with an excuse not to process. That takes a lot of planning, such as writing in to confirm every form and information required to process. If they come back and say they need something else you can show the message and say that wasn't required at the time of application. Second, is persistence and time. If they do not want to pay out, they will try to out-wait you. If you are consistent in checking in (not harassing, like once a month, but consistent) they will be forced to deal. Works every time.

Keep in mind each time you have to pass new information or a new form to them it means additional time. This will happen despite your best efforts sometimes and the key is patience.
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Offline Tcm621

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #12 on: May 26, 2016, 19:09:45 »
May I ask, have you called the Obudsman's office on this at all?
While helpful,  I found the ombudsman takes longer to reply than VAC. Probably because every damn VAC claim needs ombudsman involvement.

Offline the 48th regulator

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2016, 19:30:10 »
While helpful,  I found the ombudsman takes longer to reply than VAC. Probably because every damn VAC claim needs ombudsman involvement.

Really??  Never had a problem.

Better than gnashing teeth, and then posting on these means, wouldn't you agree?
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Offline gryphonv

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #14 on: May 27, 2016, 07:35:19 »
When would be a time to contact the Ombudsman? How much of a delay.

I know I still have a long wait ahead, even though it's annoying I am not in a situation where I need the money soon. I already have the claim approved so I know at least medically I'm covered in the future for any issues that may arise.

Also as I feel my case for compensation is not urgent. My feelings is that I'm ok waiting if it helps others who may need it more get through faster (might be backwards thinking).

My main issue with all this is the lack of transparency. The fact they can technically 'reset' the 16 week counter for any sort or arbitrary reasons, some valid others not.

Also why the 16 week counter in the first place, is it due to workload or staffing issues? Or is there a time they have to let files sit before work is done on it?

I'm sure some files have a fair bit of man hours put into them to sort it out. But in some situations, it seems as simple as a check in a certain box referenced to a table to come up with the decision.

I think the inner workings of how files are handled is closely guarded to avoid public scrutiny. But maybe with more transparency it could help appease some bad feelings to people who feel they are being delayed for no valid reason.

Offline Pieman

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #15 on: May 27, 2016, 16:06:18 »
Quote
Also why the 16 week counter in the first place, is it due to workload or staffing issues? Or is there a time they have to let files sit before work is done on it?

It's likely a mechanism put in place to help push files through faster. Either it's not being enforced, or they don't have the manpower to process within 16 weeks.
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Offline recceguy

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #16 on: May 27, 2016, 16:58:35 »
 ;)
“I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, or free to choose those who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind.”

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Offline Tcm621

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #17 on: May 27, 2016, 17:08:13 »
When would be a time to contact the Ombudsman? How much of a delay.

I know I still have a long wait ahead, even though it's annoying I am not in a situation where I need the money soon. I already have the claim approved so I know at least medically I'm covered in the future for any issues that may arise.

Also as I feel my case for compensation is not urgent. My feelings is that I'm ok waiting if it helps others who may need it more get through faster (might be backwards thinking).

My main issue with all this is the lack of transparency. The fact they can technically 'reset' the 16 week counter for any sort or arbitrary reasons, some valid others not.

Also why the 16 week counter in the first place, is it due to workload or staffing issues? Or is there a time they have to let files sit before work is done on it?

I'm sure some files have a fair bit of man hours put into them to sort it out. But in some situations, it seems as simple as a check in a certain box referenced to a table to come up with the decision.

I think the inner workings of how files are handled is closely guarded to avoid public scrutiny. But maybe with more transparency it could help appease some bad feelings to people who feel they are being delayed for no valid reason.
Contact the ombudsman so they can track what is going on. Even if things get resolved on their own, it is one more case they can add to their database and present as proof of the issues.

Offline upandatom

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #18 on: July 05, 2016, 14:06:37 »
May I ask, have you called the Obudsman's office on this at all?

Yeah I did, and the result came before that.
To be honest, I get a better result when pushing with the Inquiry Resolution Officer. They have the means to directly call the person that has my file at the time.

I am still waiting on departmental review though.

VAC said They did not see me as stable due to what the medical professional (VAC selected and provided) had stated in the reassess, or they misunderstood his statemen, I promptly requested BPA and Him to work together. He wrote a letter stating I was in fact stable, and had been for quite some time, as I had fairly successfully taken a well paying civilian job, gotten married, strengthened familial relationships since first diagnosed.

The Departmental review was successful, for whatever reason now they will not release the letter that states final payment of benefits. Going on almost two weeks now.

In addition, does anyone else find their case manager is.....NEVER THERE...... I talk more to an intake then to my actual case manager. Which is frustrating having to establish the statement of events over and over.

I find dealing with VAC the most stressful part of it all. The red tape, the insane hoops to jump through, and the most of the time ignorant, and rude members they have as analysts on the phone.
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Offline DovoNewb

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #19 on: November 16, 2016, 15:28:41 »
Well,
As we go on, I am on my 4th Claim, with medical proof, and diligent medical records, I have not once had a claim completed in the Service Standard Timeframe.

All, have gone at least 5 Months, or Longer.

The system is a joke, and even more so with those two faced lying pricks at the helm.

I submitted a claim for in May of 2016, within one week I scanned and sent via My VAC account all medical documentation they would need (original CF98 from the injury years prior, surgeons report from when the surgical correction was done, witness statements from date of injury, CF663, all chits etc.) I called repeatedly each week to get fed b.s., lied to, verbally abused on one occasion so I opened a complaint with the VAC ombudsman who also has done the square root of nothing to help me.

Only today I found out that I will not see resolution of any kind for at least another 2-3 months. The only way I can get it immediately dealt with is if I can display immediate need (ombudsman office words)....so if I was on my death bed from cancer. I'm almost wondering if my need to pay my divorce lawyer is enough financial need to get my file processed quicker so that I don't lose my daughter.

"We are trying our best......"

Offline Rifleman62

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #20 on: December 04, 2016, 13:22:39 »
VAC is now working on the adjudication, Stage 3, of files that reached HO in PEI in March 2016, thus they are way behind.

But heck, all those renewed VAC offices, closed by Harper, plus one new one in the Minister of National Defense riding are open. That will speed your file up. ;D

Opening new offices is just employing more Public Service people who, according to the AG's new report:

 
Quote
“We see government programs that are not designed to help those who have to navigate them, programs where the focus is more on what civil servants are doing than on what citizens are getting, where delivery times are long, where data is incomplete, and where public reporting does not provide a clear picture of what departments have done.”
Quote

 “Our audits come across these same problems in different organizations time and time again. Even more concerning is that when we come back to audit the same area again, we often find that program results have not improved.”

Waiting forever just to get rejected, then start all over again with an Appeal is justifying Public Service jobs.

A government who spins it's wheels to undo everything that the previous government did is childish.
« Last Edit: December 04, 2016, 13:26:33 by Rifleman62 »
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Offline Brihard

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Re: Is the system Broken?
« Reply #21 on: December 04, 2016, 14:15:40 »
I've got an army buddy who just got hired on as a benefits adjdicator. So they are hiring, at least, and seem to be giving consideration to people with military experience. That's a good thing.

I think Afghanistan has bogged down the system- capacity shrank just as need and case complexity increased significantly. Now vets are paying for it.

I am aware that VAC is looking at accepting medical decisions made by the CAF about service attribution for disabilities. That would be a very positive step. The fact that vets have to fight twice to have their injuries or illnesses accepted as legitimately linked to service is insulting and redundant.
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