B.C. court rules against injured veterans in fight for disability pensions

A former soldier says a legal loss in B.C. Appeal Court will deal a serious blow to recruitment and retention efforts by the Canadian Armed Forces.

Retired major Mark Campbell is one of six plaintiffs named in a lawsuit aimed at winning back lifelong disability pensions for former soldiers.

Campbell says yesterday's legal decision overturns the fundamental understanding held by every member of the military, that they will be looked after if they are injured or killed in the line of duty.

Campbell questions why anyone would sign up for a job that involved being put in serious danger without knowing you and your family would be supported if anything went wrong.

The Appeal Court threw out the five-year-old lawsuit, which alleges the government discriminated against disabled veterans when it changed the way those injured in the line of service are compensated.

The changes came into effect in 2006 and include replacing disability pensions with a lump-sum payment, career training and targeted income support.

Campbell and the other six veterans involved in the lawsuit say this latest legal upset won't deter them from continuing to fight, though they have yet to decide whether to file leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada.