Veterans Affairs Canada's Minister Erin O'Toole earned praise from veterans for the former's proposal to strengthen financial support for veteran reservists. The minister proposes two measures to provide financial lift to seriously and moderately disabled war Veterans in a bid to bridge the gap between the compensation received under the New Veterans Charter and the old Pension Act.

It is also a move to mend fences with the veterans whom Minister O’Toole vowed to help, according to the The Star. The two measures seek to increase the Earnings Loss Benefit and create a Retirement Income Security Benefit. The latter is to secure the financial needs of veterans after reaching 65.

Under the New Veterans Charter, Reserve Force part-time veterans who sustained injuries while serving in Afghanistan or those who cannot have decent employment shall receive 75 percent of their pre-release military salary as monthly benefit, while they are participating in the Rehabilitation Services or a maximum of $24,300. The Earnings Loss Benefit is mandatory until the age of 65. When the new measure is approved, that amount shall increase to $42,426. The new figure will soon place the part-time Reserve Force veterans on an equal footing with basic corporal Regular Force veterans.

The Retirement Income Security Benefit, meanwhile, aims to continue providing for financial stability to war veterans after 65, Canada’s normal retirement age. Veterans from Regular and Reserve Forces shall benefit from the said proposal, which also includes a provision that in case the veteran dies, his surviving heir may receive said financial support.

Veterans Affairs Canada was criticised last fall for lack of support and sympathy when it decided to close down regional offices. The heated criticism cost former Minister Julian Fantino his post. Weeks after replacing Fantino, O'Toole received some backlash from citizens when news came out that Canadian government expended around $700,000 to fight a class suit filed by wounded and disgruntled Afghan veterans.

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