Interventions in Committee
 
 
 
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View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
You say that veterans talk to you. I am not blaming the department but, very often, veterans complain to the committee that their relationships with the department are quite horrible. Those are usually complicated cases.
What are the comments you most often hear from veterans about the problems they are experiencing, about the documents they have to complete and, in some cases, about the transition steps they need to take?
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
Are you and your colleagues prepared to help veterans to fill in forms or do paperwork?
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
Along those lines, do you believe that it would be a good idea for the department to fill in forms for veterans or, conversely, do you believe that it is good to leave that task to them, even those with sometimes complex mental health issues?
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
Thank you very much but, unfortunately, due to time constraints, I have to move on to my second question.
When you talk to veterans' families, what are the three recurring problems they face with respect to service delivery?
You may also wish to provide your answers in writing and by email.
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
My wife is an anthropologist. I just wanted to ask, is it hard to fill out the papers as a Ph.D. candidate?
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
Are those all part of the bunch you received this morning, for example?
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
You said also that you find there's a lack of information coming from VAC to you, but they ask you for a whole load of information.
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
Okay. Yes, of course.
Mr. Eldaoud, I would like to go back to the medical reports, the CF 98 form, and the surgeon general.
I have also met with Ombudsman Walbourne. I understand that you really want to protect the doctors' privilege to provide a diagnosis. Their role is to provide care, not to be part of the decision to grant benefits or not. However, your ombudsman seems to tell us that, despite that, we have to do things differently.
At the moment, when the surgeon general makes a diagnosis, even though he is very aware that a knee injury happened in Kandahar on such-and-such a date, for example, he does not put that on the CF 98 form, the medical report. Am I right on that?
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Madam Migneault and Madam Murray, thank you very much for being here.
I'm just brainstorming on my question, so I'll try to figure it out. For six months I've been thinking a lot about all the issues for veterans. Last week I think I started to understand something, and what you said today corresponds to this vision that came into my mind. You talked about stopping the circus, blowing it up, and starting from scratch, and then talking about the real issues.
What I've been seeing since the beginning is that there's the stakeholders group and there's the veterans. There are two things.
Also, in terms of what the ministry does, there are also two things, the financial benefits and the services. I think since the new charter of 2006, we are in a paradigm, which is to either create new benefits or increase existing benefits and allowances. That is good, and it had to be done, but it seems to me that this is kind of the circus, because even if it was done under the previous Conservative government—and I was wondering why, when we have all these new benefits, veterans still say we did nothing—I now see this new government following our path and just doing the easy stuff, which is to have new benefits and increase allowances.
I want to talk about the real issue, which might not be the real issue, but I'm trying to find out now.
Madam Murray, you talked about structural flaws in the ministry. I'm wondering if maybe it's not flaws but it's the structural culture of this ministry. I have a straightforward question, because veterans have been talking to me about this. Are you aware of non-official rules that the ministry is imposing on its case managers? I'll listen to you first, please, Madam Murray.
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
Structurally broke, or maybe structurally they want it to be that way also. That's what I want to find out, actually.
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Mr. Beaudin, given the situation, I am stunned to hear you say that the Department of Veterans Affairs is functioning very well.
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
You say the department works properly when one knows how it works.
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
I'm very happy that you're here with us. You're the first French Canadian group representing veterans to come before us.
I have some questions for the other witnesses.
Ms. Fimrite, on the second page of your document, it says that the culture change at the department reflects a new philosophy of care, compassion, and respect that is starting to take shape and is a hopeful sign that radical changes will be made.
What are those radical changes you're talking about?
View Alupa Clarke Profile
CPC (QC)
So if the caseworkers don't fill out the forms and they're not reviewing all the processes, what are they doing, actually? What are the caseworkers doing right now? Are there any other radical changes that you have in mind?
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