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Results: 1 - 15 of 103
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I've been on this committee for just a short period of time. Since I've been here, there have been three issues, and quite frankly all three have been a fail. We have MAID, we have the contract and now the backlog, which seems to be quite consistent.
I know that in most organizations.... I don't know if there have been performance reviews on how this department is run. I've been very disappointed with it, so I'm curious about that. In most organizations, even in an NHL hockey team, for instance, if they have this kind of treatment, usually the coach or general manager or somebody has to come forward and come clean. From what I've seen from this, I'm extremely disappointed.
Minister, you sat here and said basically that nothing seems to be your responsibility, whether it's the investigation.... I get that it's separate, but there has to be some onus on you for the disappointment that's going on—
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I want to thank all the witnesses here, as well, especially those who have served. Thank you for your service.
When I left the meeting here last week, I didn't feel very good about it, quite frankly. I was upset. Over the weekend, on Friday—I have to say ahead of time—the veteran we are talking about reached out to my office. I've had lengthy discussions, like you, Mr. Meincke. There are transcripts and messages that we went over since the weekend. I just want to make sure, before we begin.... The individual we're talking about is non-partisan. He has no link to any party, first of all. The other thing I want to say is.... Quite frankly, his concern, as you said so well, is about other veterans who perhaps had the same experience, and how that could affect them. Before we even begin, I wanted to say that.
I was quite disappointed with the minister. I was quite disappointed with the deputy minister for the fact that if that was my brother, my sister, my father, a friend or anybody, what happened.... I've seen the documentation. I can't share it, either, at this particular moment in time. I haven't even shared it with my colleagues, quite frankly, to honour this gentleman. The apology, as far as I'm concerned.... I would think an individual at the top should have called this person. Obviously, they suffered from post-traumatic stress, and to leave them hanging after the fact is unacceptable. This came out in August.
Do you think that the apology, and how that went forward, was meaningful?
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
The message was that they didn't know who the individual was, but they sent a letter, so they knew who it was.
In my mind, I don't care who you are, but I think a phone call asking, “How are you doing? How are things going?” would be what someone should have done in the leadership role.
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
The individual also wanted to stress that, as you said earlier.... You had great comments about them not seeing that they have post-traumatic stress. They've given their life for our country, and then people kind of shun them.
This speaks to a bigger issue. This is what he said: “How many other people have we done this to?” Are we keeping numbers? I guess this is for Oliver Thorne. Are the numbers of individuals...? Are they going down? Do you track it for CAF? I'd like to see that. I don't know if this committee sees that, because we have to move forward. I don't think we are, quite frankly.
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
The issues, too, are far greater. He is one, so how many issues...? I think it's outside of the MAID question, and this is what I want to say. This speaks volumes to the way they are perceived as individuals after giving up their career. Coming from national defence before, we could not get people to join.
My question is for the two individuals who have served us. Would you recommend to your children, your nephews, or friends to actually join the Canadian Armed Forces?
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
Yes.
What would you suggest?
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
In 15 seconds, I can't get too much out there.
I want to say that I think we all need to do a lot more to make sure that's not the view that these veterans have, because it bothered me all weekend, quite frankly.
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I want to thank everyone. I'm excited to be here and be part of this committee.
I come from Simcoe—Grey. I have CFB Borden in my riding. When individuals happen to leave the forces, a lot who are there stay in the area for a couple of reasons: The taxes are low and they have a great member of Parliament.
To begin with, thank you for being here, Minister.
I heard you say a little earlier that you went to the deputy minister. Who found out about this first? I would think that probably the deputy minister would find out and let the minister know.
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
My concern is that if somebody didn't do it through the media, how would we have known? You should know that information immediately, I would think; you shouldn't find out through some other source and then go to the minister.
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
Through the media, the veteran in question said that your department.... I'm going to quote this. The media report said that “the service agent told him in the call about having helped another veteran access resources for medical assistance in dying through Veterans Affairs Canada, including support for that person's children who were struggling with the impending death.”
Have you or your officials been able to confirm if this is the case?
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
Are there other individuals that you know of—or the minister directly—outside of this who perhaps have used MAID or been recommended to use MAID?
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
To follow up, I would say from my municipal background that if there was a health and safety issue through the ministry, it was not only that individual who would be looked at. I think there's a bigger problem. I was worried when you said this was an employee who was well established. To me, that brings more sirens to the fact that perhaps there are other issues that need to be looked at.
I want to state this for a fact. I came from the Department of National Defence before this. We have a hard time getting new people because there are so many issues and red flags popping up. I can tell you that these veterans who are leaving, with their wait times and with these kinds of issues, aren't the ones who would suggest to people, “This is a great career to go into, to be there for us as Canadians.”
What's your comment on that?
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
View Terry Dowdall Profile
CPC (ON)
Who would go there with the issues we're seeing here? Who is going to speak positively about it?
I just got on this committee two days ago and I'm getting calls from veterans who are struggling. I just got my name on the sheet. I'm saying there are some major issues with the department, and if any more people died on this through MAID, there has to be a big investigation into it.
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