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View Rachel Blaney Profile
NDP (BC)
I only have six minutes, so I apologize, General. I certainly don't want to be in trouble with you.
According to the wait times tool on the department's website, we know as of the 19th of this month that the disability claim benefit response time for hearing loss, for example, was 17 weeks, or about four months. For post-traumatic stress disorder, a single condition, it is 33 weeks, which is about eight months. Multiple conditions are about nine months. It just shows you how long people are waiting. That is your tool.
We also know that the veterans ombudsperson has stated that the most frequent complaints in his office are issues around wait times and backlog. One thing he has talked about is that clear action plan.
Can you tell us what the clear action plan is? I also want to note that the longer average turnaround times are for the francophone and women claimants. I would like to know why that is the case.
I heard as well that lack of communication is a challenge, particularly with respect to the process of prioritizing cases. What is the triage model when people come in and make claims, so that you can assess where the urgency is? If you have these huge backlogs, I certainly hope the people with the biggest concerns that are most urgent would be moved to the top of the list, while understanding that we need something to change. I don't want any of our veterans at the bottom of the list.
That's a big question, but I have a limited amount of time and I want you to give me a perfect answer, so good luck with that.
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