New pension plan draws ire of disabled veterans

The Trudeau Liberals are facing anger from many disabled veterans over what some are calling a betrayal over the government's new pension plan for those injured while in uniform.

The National Council of Veteran Associations, which represents more than 60 veteran groups, is the latest to come out against the pension plan, which Veterans Affairs Minister Seamus O'Regan unveiled before Christmas.

The new scheme was intended to fulfil a Liberal campaign promise to reinstate lifelong pensions for disabled veterans, which were replaced in 2006 with a lump-sum payment and other targeted financial assistance.

But while the government says its plan will provide disabled veterans with more compensation, the council says its analysis had found most injured ex-soldiers would not see any real benefit.

Council chairman Brian Forbes says this means the financial disparity between veterans injured before and after 2006, the source of much anger for many veterans, will continue to persist.

A spokesman for O'Regan defended the new plan yesterday, saying it would provide more money to all disabled veterans, and asserting that the old pensions did not provide enough support.