Mefloquine is an anti-malarial
medication, which was often prescribed for members of the Canadian
Armed Forces who were deployed to malaria-prevalent areas such as
Somalia, Rwanda and Afghanistan.
However, there are many
serious side effects associated with the use of Mefloquine, some of
which are especially problematic for circumstances experienced by
military personnel. These side effects include, but are not limited
to: anxiety, paranoia, psychotic behaviour, depression, thoughts of
suicide, and hallucinations.
The warning labels for
Mefloquine by Health Canada were revised in 2016 to include the
above side effects, emphasizing the severity and duration of these
effects. Despite allegedly finding that Mefloquine does not have
long-term effects, the Canadian Armed Forces now only prescribes
Mefloquine as the last line of prevention or treatment for malaria.
Legal History and Action
In 2001, a class action was
commenced for veterans who served in Somalia and who were ordered to
take Mefloquine. This action was commenced in Ontario against the
Canadian government, among others. However, in 2018 this class
action was dismissed for delay.
In late 2018, Howie, Sacks &
Henry LLP partnered with Waddell Phillips PC to represent individual
mass tort claims for all veterans who were required to take
Mefloquine from 1992 onwards.
For more information on the
difference between a class action and mass tort actions, please see
our article here.
The Mefloquine Issue
Canadian veterans who were
deployed to various locations including Somalia, Rwanda and
Afghanistan in the 1990’s and 2000’s, and who were required to take
Mefloquine, have come forward claiming they are now suffering from
serious and long-term side effects from the anti-malarial drug.
Many veterans claim they
suffered one or more of these significant side effects after they
were ordered to take the anti-malaria drug, which was initially
prescribed as part of a clinical trial in Somalia, and then
afterwards adopted by the military as their anti-malarial drug of
choice. One of the main issues is that the clinical trial did not
follow proper procedure. Among its failings, the veterans were not
asked to provide their consent and potential side effects were not
disclosed to them prior to the trial. Later on, for missions such as
those in Rwanda and Afghanistan, the government continued to fail to
disclose to its troops the potentially permanent side effects.
As a result, they claim the
federal government did not meet its duty of care. Veterans are now
seeking compensation for the harm and injuries they have suffered as
a result of that negligence on the part of their government.
Mefloquine is rarely used
today in the Canadian military. It was announced in June 2017 by the
Department of National Defence that Mefloquine would only be used if
someone in the Canadian Armed Forces specifically asked for it, or
if there are particular issues with the other anti-malarials (i.e.,
allergy, interaction or contraindications with other drugs, etc.).
Call us today for a free
consultation and to see if you are eligible to join our Mefloquine
Lawsuit in Canada.
The Airborne Social
Club (Edmonton) has confirmed they will host a Paratroopers Reunion
in Edmonton during the above period.
This reunion is open to
all former members of the Canadian Airborne Regiment; current and
former members - Regular and Reserve Force Parachute Units/Elements;
former members of the Canadian Airborne Centre; former members
Canadian Forces Parachute Maintenance Depot; 1 Canadian Parachute
Association; current and former paratroopers members of Search and
Rescue Squadrons/Elements; Allied Paratroopers; and all other
paratroopers, whether or not they have served in an active parachute
role or not.
In addition to the above members themselves, a
grateful welcome is extended to all Honorary Club members, wives,
spouses and partners of members no longer with us.
specific theme has been established, members of the Club are at the
initial planning stages and will provide specific details on a
Although we are endeavouring to reach as many
as possible via all means possible, it is requested that you pass on
this information to those you are in contact with and who we may not
IN THE NEWS Job opportunities for military spouses
VVi 18 Sep 2020 db
The Department of National
Defence is making it easier for military spouses and common-law
partners to find secure and meaningful jobs. Today, the Military
Spouse Employment Initiative will open up opportunities for them
across the entire federal public service.
military family relocates three times more often than the average
Canadian family. This means uprooting their lives, changing their
routines, and encountering new challenges on a regular basis. As a
result, it can be very challenging for partners of serving members
to secure continuous and meaningful employment. To help address this
challenge, in 2018, the Department created the Military Spousal
Employment Initiative to identify job opportunities at DND. Today’s
announcement expands upon the initiative offering the entire Public
Service access to a talented workforce.
The initiative has
already proven to ease some of the stress felt by many military
families, including Justine Walker’s. “I’m very grateful for my job,
and I definitely wouldn’t have it if it wasn’t for the Military
Spouse Employment Initiative,” said Justine Walker, who works as a
compensation assistant at National Defence. A military spouse,
Justine says her full-time position gives her security, both now and
in the future. “When we get posted again, I’ll have options for
transferring my job, finding a new job, or putting my job on hold
while on a temporary posting. My employer is across Canada, and
there are many opportunities to grow within the Department of
National Defence community. I feel extremely secure in my career,
and I’m proud to be contributing to my own pension and making a
career for myself.” Opening up the employment inventory to the
entire federal public service will ensure there are more stories
Military partners can now be considered as a
hiring option ahead of other candidates at the Department of
National Defence (with the exception of those with priority
entitlements or preference) if they meet all of the essential
qualifications for the job.
“Military partners – mostly women
– face a high degree of career instability as a result of the
frequent relocations,” notes Deputy Minister Jody Thomas. “This
initiative creates better options for military spouses to find good
jobs and benefits within the federal public service, and is exactly
the kind of tangible support that helps improve the overall
wellbeing of the military families who contribute so much to our
country. Employing a Canadian military spouse is a wise strategic
decision for any employer. Military life teaches our Canadian Armed
Forces families to organize, adapt, manage, and work within a team,
and any military spouse will arrive at their new job with those
essential skills well-developed. By hiring a military spouse,
employers are strengthening Canada and Canadian business lines.”
The inventory is open exclusively to spouses and common-law
partners of serving Canadian Armed Forces members, who either live
at the military member’s place of duty or live separately for
military reasons. The Canadian Armed Forces member must belong to
the Regular Force or to the Reserve Force on Class C service or
Class B reserve service of more than 180 consecutive days. Those who
meet the above criteria are eligible to apply online to the
The pool of talent includes many streams such as
information management and information technology (IM/IT),
procurement, materiel management, language teaching, health
services, administration, and general services, as well as general
trades and labour.
The Military Spouse Employment Initiative
has won the Most Effective Recruitment Strategy silver award at the
Canadian HR Awards 2020. The initiative supports several objectives
outlined in Canada’s defence policy, Strong, Secured, Engaged. Those
objectives seek to support military families by addressing and
alleviating the employment challenges that they face when relocating
The Military Spousal Employment Initiative is
a complement to a wide range of services available to military
spouses through Canadian Forces Morale and Welfare Services and
local Military Family Resource Centres. These services include the
flagship Military Spousal Employment Network, launched in 2018. The
Military Spousal Employment Network boasts over 3,200 military
spouse participants and showcases national and virtual employers
interested in hiring military spouses through an online platform and
virtual and in-person. Last year, just over 25 percent of military
spouses who participated were hired through the Military Spousal
The Advocate-Equalizer A
veteran of Somalia who has suffered from quinism for more than 25
years, Dave Bona shares his insights on the the disease and the
importance of nutrition.
14 Sep 2020
VVi 18 Sep 2020
The term “quinism” may
seem new, but the symptoms of poisoning by mefloquine (previously
marketed as Lariam®), tafenoquine (marketed as Krintafel® and
Arakoda™), and related quinoline drugs are all too familiar:
Tinnitus. Dizziness. Vertigo. Paresthesias. Visual disturbances.
Gastroesophageal and intestinal problems. Nightmares. Insomnia.
Sleep apnea. Anxiety. Agoraphobia. Paranoia. Cognitive dysfunction.
Depression. Personality change. Suicidal thoughts.
These symptoms are not “side
effects”. They are symptoms of poisoning by a class of drug that is
neurotoxic and that injures the brain and brainstem. This poisoning
causes a disease, and this disease has a name: Chronic quinoline
encephalopathy — also known as quinism.
hen I initially began my
investigation of mefloquine and the role it had to play in the
“Somalia Affair”, the very first person I had a conversation with
was Dave Bona. It was during that phone conversation that I would
hear first hand of the destruction this drug was inflicting upon the
lives of our veterans.
I had taken the time to find
out what I could about Dave before I spoke with him, and consulted
the vast number of articles and interviews that he is featured in
online. I discovered a man who had been living in a nightmare for
over a quarter of a century, the result of the neurotoxic drug he
was ordered to take in 1992/93 while part of Operation Deliverance.
I had an idea about what I
might expect to hear during our conversation, but hearing these
things first hand was still shocking to me. He was giving me a
perspective that nothing I had read to that point could ever truly
give justice to. I was now speaking with someone who was living
through a nightmare, and as I listened to him tell me about what his
life has been like for all this time, a range of emotions began to
build up inside of me.
The first thing that hits me
as I talk with Dave is a sense of shock/horror/disbelief at 1) the
symptoms that I am hearing this man describe to me and, 2) anger
mixed with rage at the thought that this man and many others like
him were poisoned at the behest of their government. This quickly
added to my motivation as I set out to do something for these
veterans who have paid a very high price for serving their country,
a country whose government continues to deny them at every turn.
Canada’s Godfather of
The former paratrooper has
been actively involved in mefloquine awareness and advocacy for
three years now. Although mefloquine awareness efforts in Canada had
started several years before his involvement, his contributions have
been enormous. Because of his efforts, a large and ever growing
number of veterans has been made aware of quinism, resulting in an
untold number of lives that will have been saved for receiving his
He’s also among the group of
Canadians who have suffered its debilitating symptoms the longest,
symptoms that have now lasted for the past 26 years. In that time
he’s racked up a lifetime’s worth of experience in living with the
disease and he shares his insights and knowledge with everyone in
videos he posts on Facebook.
The importance of nutrition.
For Dave, nutrition is a critical weapon in his battle with quinism.
Through his own research and by trial and error, Dave is learning
the important role nutrition plays in recovering from traumatic
brain injuries. Unlike PTSD, quinism is another form of TBI, though
it is one that has been caused by a drug as opposed to kinetic
It isn’t only through videos
that Dave gets his point across, as he also provides his analysis of
mefloquine related issues in posts such as this one:
Dave is a very central figure
when it comes to quinism in Canada, and his Facebook page is a
repository of information on mefloquine and a gathering place for
others who are advocating for mefloquine veterans.
Dave has also been the subject
of many stories in the media over the years. Some tell of the ways
that mefloquine has destroyed his life, but a great many others tell
of how he is now fighting back, not just for himself but for the
thousands of others just like him.
What Dave Bona is experiencing
isn’t just a Canadian phenomenon. Thousands of veterans from across
the globe have had the same symptoms, the same thoughts, the very
same feelings that Dave has had. They are the feelings shared by
battle-hardened American veterans of Afghanistan and Swedish
He has come to be a beacon in
the darkness, helping to guide others away from peril and showing
them to a safe harbour. If you or someone you know is suffering from
the symptoms of quinism, and aren’t sure about what to do, Dave
would be a great resource for you.
You should also visit The
Quinism Foundation at www,quinism.org for the most accurate and up
to date information by the leading figure in quinism research, Dr.
Remington Nevin. The foundation’s mission is laid out in the “About
Us” section of their web page.
The foundation has an enormous
job ahead. We must prepare healthcare organizations to identify
those exposed to quinolines and to screen for symptomatic quinoline
exposure. We must educate clinicians to diagnose chronic quinoline
encephalopathy and other medical conditions caused by quinoline
poisoning. We must train researchers to distinguish the effects of
quinism from those of other disorders, including Post-traumatic
Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). We must
assist government agencies to recognize those suffering disability
from quinism. We must identify risk factors for the disease. We must
attempt to count all those affected. And, we must support a search
for effective treatments.
… The foundation is proud to
be listed as a registered charity in the PayPal Giving Fund, on
Amazon Smile, and in the Network for Good’s donor-advised fund. You
can also read more about the foundation’s charitable activities by
reviewing our listing on Guidestar.
2nd Battalion Princess Patricas Canadian Light Infantry Battle
Group - Battle of Medac Pocket
Alex Brennan September 7 at 1:08
VVi 09 Sep 2020
· 27 years ago Canadian soldiers in
the 2nd Battalion Princess Patricas Canadian Light Infantry Battle
Group found themselves in between two opposing sides. 50% were army
reservist from across our nation. When push came to shove the
Canadians forced a cease fire after other UN forces left without
making a stand. The Canadian Government did not recognize this until
10 years later. Many of our peers didn't believe what we had been
through. For the next two weeks I will be thinking of those men and
women who served with me and endured, artillery, mortar and small
arms fire. Not all injuries are physical. Peace to everyone, hoping
your lot in life is better today. Special shout out to Sheldon Dean
Maerz for his photos.
A 'deafening silence': Canada still struggles with the Second
World War's legacy, says historian
Murray Brewster · CBC News ·
Posted: Sep 02, 2020 4:00 AM
ET | Last Updated: September 2
VVi 05 ep 2020 db
Tim Cook argues Canadians have
a blind spot when it comes to their role in a war that changed the
Col. Lawrence Cosgrave (right), the Canadian defence attache in
Australia during the Second World War, accepted the surrender of
Japanese forces on the Government of Canada's behalf on Sept. 2,
1945. (Canadian War Museum/Contributed)
Seventy-five years ago today,
a little-known Canadian colonel — a half-blind veteran of the First
World War — sat pen in hand before a dark cloth-covered table on the
quarterdeck of the American battleship U.S.S. Missouri.
Allied warships had assembled
in a long, grey line in the stifling heat of Tokyo Bay — a mute
audience for the moment the victors met the vanquished.
Along with a host of military
glitterati that included U.S. Gen. Douglas MacArthur, Col. Lawrence
Cosgrave accepted the surrender of the Japanese empire on Canada's
behalf. He signed on the wrong line, causing a minor kerfuffle that
was soon rectified by MacArthur's chief of staff with a stroke of
his own pen.
The Second World War ended at
A copy of the Sept. 2, 1945 Japanese surrender document, displayed
aboard the USS Missouri historical site at Pearl Harbor, Oahu. (
Murray Brewster/CBC News)
The most deadly and destructive conflict in human history — a war
that killed at least 75 million people worldwide, claimed 45,000
Canadian lives and left another 55,000 Canadians physically and
mentally scarred — was finally over.
Once the shooting stopped,
said historian Tim Cook, war-weary Canadians were eager to forget
the war — or at least to move on from it. Few people know, and even
fewer appreciate, the somewhat droll role Cosgrove played in that
great moment three-quarters of a century ago.
That act of collective
forgetting bothers Cook. It's reflected in the title of his latest
book: The Fight for History: 75 Years of Forgetting, Remembering and
Remaking Canada's Second World War.
One of the book's working
titles was "The Deafening Silence."
"It's not easy to talk about
our history," Cook told CBC News. "History often divides us."
Cook — one of the country's
leading military historians and authors — said he's baffled by
Canadians' apparent reluctance to come to grips with the war's
Historian Tim Cook: "History often divides us." (CBC News)
Following the First World War,
Canadians built monuments from coast to coast. Canadian soldiers who
served in that war — Cosgrave among them — wrote sometimes eloquent
and moving accounts of their experiences under fire.
That didn't happen in Canada
following the Japanese and German surrenders in 1945, said Cook.
"We didn't write the same
history books. We didn't produce films or television series," he
said. "We allowed the Americans and the British and even the Germans
to write about the war and to present it on film."
Some Canadian war
correspondents wrote books in the immediate aftermath of the
victory, hoping to speak to history — but senior military commanders
and leaders subsequently shied away.
Unlike the American and
British generals who wrote Second World War memoirs (Dwight
Eisenhower, George Patton and Bernard Montgomery), Canadian
commanders Harry Crerar, Andrew McNaughton, George Pearkes and Guy
Simmonds all chose to remain silent and allowed biographers to tell
their stories — sometimes decades after the fact.
Cook said the reluctance of
many returning Canadian soldiers to discuss the war beyond the tight
circles of Royal Canadian Legion halls — a silence that persisted
for decades — also contributed to Canadians' lack of engagement with
the country's experiences in the Second World War.
The 'comfortable' image of
Canada the peacekeeper
The advent of peacekeeping has
also tainted Canada's view of the conflict, he said.
While some critics have argued
successive governments have exploited the peacekeeping mythology,
Cook said he's very proud of Canada's peacekeeping legacy. But
peacekeeping "became a very comfortable symbol for us," he said. "I
argue in the book that it too has contributed to the silencing of
the Second World War."
In the 1960s, Cook said,
Remembrance Day ceremonies in Canada suffered from dwindling
attendance. It was only in the 1980s and 1990s — when the war was
being re-examined through American popular culture properties like
the hit movie Saving Private Ryan — that a deeper appreciation began
to take root, he said.
Cook argues that revival of
interest happened almost too late — at a time when many veterans had
already passed away and few living Canadians remembered the war as a
"We shouldn't expect the
Americans or the British and the Germans and the Japanese to talk
about the war" in the same way Canadians experienced it, he said.
"If you don't tell your own
story, no one else will."
History can be "dangerous" for
politicians, Cook argues, because of the divisions it leaves behind
(the conscription crisis of 1944 damaged English-French relations in
Canada) and the effect of its darker chapters — such as the
internment of Japanese-Canadians — when they come to light.
Many of the international
institutions that were born out of the Second World War are under
attack today. That's just one reason why remembering the war is so
important, said Cook.
"I'm not suggesting we should
write heroic history and that we need to chest-thump and stand
behind the flag. But I do think we need to tell our stories."
The American battleship USS Missouri hosted the Japanese surrender
ceremony on Sept. 2, 1945. It is now a museum in Oahu, Hawaii. (
Murray Brewster/CBC News)
ABC Far North Ex-soldiers
say potential COVID-19 drug triggered depression, memory loss
ABC Far North / By Marian Faa Posted ThuThursday 13 AugAugust
2020 at 2:28pm, updated ThuThursday 13 AugAugust 2020 at 9:07pm
VVi 05 Sep 2020 db
Glen Norton blames the anti-malaria drug he was given in the
military for his health issues.(ABC Far North: Marian Faa)
Australian Army veterans given a controversial drug while deployed
in East Timor have raised concerns about its safety, saying the
medicine should not be used as a treatment for COVID-19.
points: An anti-malaria drug has shown early signs as a potential
treatment for COVID-19 in laboratory studies Army veterans given
the drug 20 years ago say it caused them long-term psychiatric side
effects A Senate inquiry found there was no compelling evidence
of lasting health problems but experts recommend more research
The anti-malarial tafenoquine is being explored as a treatment
for coronavirus with laboratory studies conducted in Melbourne
claiming tafenoquine was four times more potent against SARS-CoV-2
cells than hydroxychloroquine.
The study has not yet been
peer-reviewed but drug company 60 Degrees Pharmaceuticals (60P) is
planning to conduct clinical research to determine its effectiveness
Chief executive Geoff Dow said the company was
optimistic about the initiative.
Glen Norton says he was a "happy and keen" young soldier before
taking a controversial anti-malaria drug.(ABC: Supplied)
"Like many companies, 60P and its partners are trying to do our part
to provide solutions for treating and preventing COVID 19," he said.
But some doctors and veterans have raised serious concerns about
Glen Norton is one of almost 700
soldiers who took the anti-malarial during trials conducted by the
Defence Force between 1998 and 2002.
Two decades later, Mr
Norton continues to suffer chronic depression, anxiety, nightmares,
hallucinations, memory loss and extreme mood swings.
been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder but believes his
symptoms are long-term side effects from taking tafenoquine.
"One minute I would be happy, and the next minute I would be curled
up in the corner somewhere crying," he said.
"This drug has
totally destroyed my personal life."
'We were having
Mr Norton said he first began noticing changes
when he took tafenoquine while deployed in East Timor in 2000.
"We used to call Sunday nights psycho night because of the side
effects," he said.
"All of us that were on those drugs were
having nightmares and things like that — we had people literally
screaming in their sleep like they're being murdered."
young men with faces painted in camoflage in the bush.
Glen Norton says he began having nightmares while taking the
anti-malarial on a peace keeping mission in East Timor.(ABC:
Mr Norton is no longer in the Army and owns
businesses in Cairns and Darwin.
He said he was horrified to
hear tafenoquine was being considered as a treatment for
"I would prefer to catch COVID-19 and take the
risk than to let anyone go through the pain and suffering myself and
other soldiers have experienced."
Doctors debate drug's
Tafenoquine was approved by the Therapeutic Goods
Administration for use as a malaria prevention drug in 2018.
Side effects listed in the product information include sleep
disturbances, depression and anxiety in up to 1 per cent of cases.
Dr Dow said clinical studies of tafenoquine had been reviewed by
independent medical experts, who concluded the drug was safe.
But some doctors have warned the drug's long-term risks may not
be fully understood.
American epidemiologist Remington Nevin
said tafenoquine belonged to a class of anti-malaria medications
shown to be neurotoxic.
"I am afraid we're seeing the same
thing potentially playing out with tafenoquine," Dr Nevin said.
"Our group's concern is that there is simply incomplete study
data on these drugs."
Hydroxychloroquine tablets are displayed on a dark surface
Tafenoquine belongs to the same family of drugs as
hydroxychloroquine, also developed to treat malaria.(AP: John
Dr Nevin believes there were critical flaws in the
study conducted on Australian soldiers, who were deployed on
peacekeeping missions at the time.
"When symptoms develop in
this environment, it's very tempting to attribute these — and
possibly misattribute these — simply to the stresses of deployment
and not to the drugs," he said.
"I'm also concerned about the
ethics of the trials that have been conducted and the quality of
clinical data that have been collected from these studies."
Others have argued the drug is safe.
University of Queensland
anti-malaria expert James McCarthy gave evidence to a Senate inquiry
into the use of tafenoquine in the Defence Force in 2018.
Professor McCarthy told the inquiry tafenoquine had never been
associated with neuropsychiatric side effects at normal doses for
"Comprehensive reviews of multiple
clinical trials suggest that the incidence of neurological side
effects was no higher in those receiving tafenoquine compared with a
placebo," he said.
Large-scale study underway
review by the US Food and Drug Administration found there was enough
evidence to conclude tafenoquine was safe.
However, it also
flagged concerns about the drug's potential neuropsychiatric side
effects and recommended further research.
Some members of the
review committee said safety data from clinical studies were small
and the noted follow-up periods were short.
A scientist looks into a microscope while wearing a protective suit
at the CSIRO Australia Animal Health Laboratory. Researchers are
looking into tafenoquine as a COVID-19 treatment.(Supplied: CSIRO)
Dr Dow said a large-scale study into the psychiatric safety of
tafenoquine had been underway since 2017, with results expected in
the second half of next year.
Mr Norton said clinical trials
of tafenoquine against COVID-19 should not take place until further
research was completed.
"How can you conduct a trial and say
that this drug is safe, it's all singing, it's all dancing, when
you're not looking at the long-term effects of what these drugs do
to the human body?" he said.
'Some days I would have killed
Veterans are calling for a royal commission into
drug trials conducted by the military's Malaria and Infectious
Diseases Institute, amid allegations of corruption and ethics
Wayne Karakyriacos, who also took tafenoquine while
deployed in East Timor, said soldiers did not give informed consent
to participate in the trials.
"We got told if you did not
sign the paperwork, you would not deploy," he said.
this is not about financial gain — it's about justice and the truth,
and how the [Military's] Australian Malaria Institute could use
Australian soldiers as guinea pigs."
Ex-soldier Glen Norton says there's been no research into the
long-term side effects suffered by veterans who took the
controversial anti-malaria drug while deployed in East Timor and
Bougainville.(ABC Far North: Marian Faa)
The 2018 Senate
inquiry heard evidence from more than a dozen soldiers, veterans and
their relatives who said tafenoquine had a major detrimental impact
on their lives.
"Some days I had to leave as I would have
actually killed someone with no regret at all. The anxiety and anger
was uncontrollable. This was not the life I wanted to live," one
A Defence spokeswoman said the inquiry found
the trials were conducted ethically and lawfully, in keeping with
She said the Commonwealth had committed
$2.1 million to support veterans concerned about having taken
tafenoquine and other anti-malaria drugs.
"DVA is delivering
a national program that provides concerned veterans with the option
to receive a comprehensive health assessment to identify
service-related illness, disease and injury," she said.
"These health assessments will be conducted by GPs trained to
address medical issues specific to veterans and anti-malarial
The spokeswoman said Defence had agreed to 12
of the inquiry's 14 recommendations and agreed in principle to the
Back in Dec we lost a good
man, John Labelle. John was the lead advocate on reversing the
CFSA Clawback. He advocated to his very last day.Personally, I
will miss working with this dedicated veteran. I will miss his
Federal restrictions hurting ombudsman’s ability to help
Aug 17, 2020 6:10 AM
Berthiaume, The Canadian Press This report by The Canadian Press
was first published Aug. 17, 2020.
VVi 31 Aug 2020 db
OTTAWA — The veterans ombudsman’s office is hoping a new report
flagging problems with the watchdog’s limited authority and lack of
independence from the federal government will lead to improvements
in its ability to help those who have served in uniform.
Commissioned by the ombudsman’s office, the report represents the
first real review of the watchdog’s operations since it was created
in 2007 as a place that disabled veterans could turn if they felt
the federal government was treating them unfairly.
veterans have since complained that the office has failed to live up
to those expectations, an assessment that the watchdog itself has
“We strive to do our best, with the tools currently
at our disposal, but we can and want to do more to address fairness
issues veterans and their families are experiencing,” the
ombudsman’s office said in a statement following the report’s
“An expanded mandate would make that possible. We
could investigate more veterans’ complaints, sooner, and more
efficiently, which would enable us to have a greater ability to
impact equitable outcomes for veterans and their families.”
The analysis was conducted by Ottawa management firm Goss Gilroy
Inc. and found the ombudsman has made a difference when it comes to
some systemic issues affecting veterans such as inadequate financial
support for large segments of the community.
Yet the analysis
was frank in its assessment of the federally mandated limits on the
office’s ability to investigate individual complaints, describing
those restrictions as “key barriers” to the watchdog’s ability to
help many veterans in need.
“The ombudsman should have the
power to look at any complaint and not be restricted (with some
specific exceptions like legal opinions), particularly when the
department fails to respond to the complainant’s request for an
internal review,” the report said.
It went on to note
widespread and longstanding questions and concerns about the
office’s perceived and real lack of independence given that it
reports to the minister of veterans affairs and Veterans Affairs
Canada rather than Parliament.
While staff in the ombudsman’s
office and Veterans Affairs believed the watchdog has operated
largely independently, the report said, “most external stakeholders
questioned the independence of the OVO while being employed by and
reporting to VAC.”
“Most veterans and other stakeholders
interviewed believe that the OVO should be totally independent from
VAC to avoid misperceptions, to safeguard against interference by
the minister/department and to allow the office to use more than
just ‘moral-suasion’ to achieve results.”
findings largely reflect concerns raised by the most recent
ombudsman, Craig Dalton, before he resigned suddenly in May after
only 18 months on the job to become city manager in Lethbridge,
In response to the report, Veterans Affairs Canada says
it plans to conduct its own assessment over the coming months to
determine how the ombudsman’s office — which remains vacant
following Dalton’s resignation — can be improved.
of the report focused on the ombudsman’s limited ability to
investigate certain cases and lack of independence, it also
criticized the watchdog for taking a long time to respond to
veterans’ complaints and concerns.
“The veterans who raised
concerns when interviewed noted that despite repeated calls or
letters to the OVO, months could go by before they got an answer to
their enquiry regarding their claim,” the report said.
ombudsman’s office blamed a shortage of staff and constant turnover,
but said it was working to address the problem.
Despite the pandemic, European NATO members have no
plans to cut their military budgets or revise their
defence doctrines this year, according to statements
made by the highest senior commanders of the Alliance
and representatives of various ministries of Defence.
Quite the contrary, many are considering a further
raising of their combat potential as one way to
stimulate their economies, which were negatively
affected by COVID-19.
Accurate plotting of a potential enemy's next moves has
seen militaries worldwide rely increasingly on
sophisticated technologies for strategic advantage, and
that's where NATO's Airborne Early Warning & Control
force comes in.
General Jonathan Vance, Chief of the Defence Staff
(CDS), announced, in March 2020, the list of Canadian
Armed Forces (CAF) appointments, promotions, and
retirements for 2020, and then announced his own
retirement in July.
gathered the key industry leaders in the defence and
national security sectors. These are the project primes
and specialized subcontractors that provide Top
Quality solutions for these critical sectors.
In naval warfare, one of the best tools for area denial
is the anti-ship missile system. Iran is developing
sophisticated anti-ship missile systems to counter any
offensive advantage posed by its adversaries.
Whether we like it or not, systemic relations,
transactions, and clashes between people and polities
across the globe rarely have the consideration to pause
for our convenience (or global pandemics). One’s
understanding of conflict must continually be challenged
in order to be relevant when it is needed most. Through
a historical evaluation of the foreign policy objectives
of the three major pre-Islamic iterations of Iranian
dominance, this essay concludes that many of the
historical lessons can be accurately applied today.
Former Money laundering investigator shares thoughts on
what the pending report onMoney
Laundering in BCis expected
to reveal, and offers his own recommendations to close
legal loopholes that make Canada a lucrative option for
such criminal behaviour.
Since May 25th, thousands of people of all ethnicities
have taken to the streets in multiple cities around the
world, as a groundswell movement for real and equal
justice for all people began to take hold. Will 2020
finally be the year in whichlisteningturns
tohearing, and then toaction?
Change has indeed begun. Hopefully our leaders will
embrace and assist this grassroots progress, but if not,
to borrow from General Mattis, we can still do it
together. What will you do?
As 2020 rolled in, few could have guessed that members
of the Canadian Armed Forces would soon be helping
elderly Canadians battle an invisible enemy: the novel
coronavirus that had emerged in China's Wuhan province
in late 2019.
Toronto Police Service Trainers analyze recent protests
from a best practices and crowd management perspective.
Updated and consistent training is one part of
the solution to change response tactics from aggressive
escalation to serving the public right to peaceful
As COVID continues to force the federal government to
implement measures that will inject liquidity into the
economy, now is the time to reflect on
annual defence budgets and the impact on capabilities
from long-term funding shifts.
Efforts to combat the effects of COVID-19 may compel
deep cuts to DND/CAF – creating an opportunity to
re-align security policy across government. A clearer
distinction between 'compulsory' and 'discretionary'
missions will help ensure the military's relevance for
the most important challenges facing Canadians.
An unsettling revelation that Information Ops on the
Canadian public had been underway for some time before
the CDS got wind of it called an immediate
halt. Considering that neither the CDS nor the Minister
were aware of this initiative, one has to wonder what
level of oversight exists for those operators?
10 May update: Partial
remains of second crew member, Captain Brenden Ian
MacDonald, have been identified after CH-148 Cyclone
accident. A repatriation ceremony for all six Canadian
Armed Forces members killed at sea in a helicopter
crash, took place on 6 May 2020. Read original story and
2021 – Veteran identifier question / Recensement de 2021 –
Question d’identification des vétérans
VVi 31 Sep 2020
Dear Stakeholders and Advisory
I am pleased to let you know
that the questions which will make up the 2021 Census are now public
and will include a Veteran identifier question – the first since
1971. As Minister of Veterans Affairs, I was surprised to learn that
there is no formal listing of Canadian military Veterans. This
creates a significant information gap that hampers the ability to
fully understand and respond to the needs of Canadian Veterans and
their families. That is why Veterans Affairs Canada has been working
closely with Statistics Canada and advocating for the inclusion of a
Veteran identifier question on the national survey.
We recently learned that these
efforts had paid off - the 2021 national census will ask, “Have you
ever served in the Canadian military?”. The addition of this
question will provide the first truly accurate data on Canada’s
Veteran population in 50 years. The data gathered from this survey
will inform programs, supports and services for Canadian Veterans
and their families for years to come. This is truly a victory that
ensures those who serve our country no longer remain hidden from
official statistics and gives us the opportunity to put the best
supports in place that they so richly deserve.
For the latest 2021 Census
information and developments, I invite you to visit the Statistics
Canada website The road to the 2021 Census.
Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National
Chers intervenants et membres des groupes consultatifs,
Je suis heureux de vous
informer que les questions que contiendra le Recensement de 2021
sont maintenant publiques et qu’il y aura parmi celles ci une
question d’identification des vétérans – la première depuis 1971. En
tant que ministre des Anciens Combattants, j’étais surpris
d’apprendre qu’il n’existe aucune liste officielle des vétérans
militaires canadiens. Il en résulte un important manque
d’information qui empêche de comprendre entièrement les besoins des
vétérans canadiens et de leur famille et d’y répondre. C’est
pourquoi Anciens Combattants Canada travaille étroitement avec
Statistique Canada et plaide pour l’inclusion d’une question
d’identification des vétérans dans l’enquête nationale.
Récemment nous avons su que
ces efforts avaient porté fruit – le Recensement de 2021 comptera la
question suivante : « Avez vous déjà servi dans l’Armée canadienne
». L’ajout de cette question fournira les premières données vraiment
précises en 50 ans, au sujet de la population de vétérans du Canada.
Les données recueillies permettront d’orienter les programmes, les
mesures de soutien et les services offerts aux vétérans canadiens et
à leur famille pendant des années à venir. Il s’agit d’une victoire
qui garantit que ceux qui servent notre pays feront maintenant
partie des statistiques officielles et qui nous donne l’occasion de
mettre en place les meilleures mesures de soutien qu’ils méritent
Pour obtenir les derniers
renseignements et progrès au sujet du Recensement de 2021, je vous
invite à consulter le site Web de Statistique Canada En route vers
le Recensement de 2021.
Lawrence MacAulay Ministre des
Anciens Combattants et ministre associé de la Défense nationale
Hey all, I've been
looking to buy a
home far from the
city. I've come to
a conclution that
I officially hate
the GTA and cant
live here anymore;
help my PTSD...
FrontLine has gathered the key industry leaders,
project primes and specialized subcontractors
who provide Top Quality solutions for the
defence sector. We will feature them all in our
newsletter (in no particular order) over the
Stakeholder Engagement and
Outreach is pleased to share with you information on three
initiatives impacted by COVID 19.
COVID-19 IMPACTS: Veteran
The True Patriot Love
Foundation and the Vanier Institute of the Family are conducting a
survey to gather information and insights about how Veteran families
are feeling, what they are doing and what they are thinking about
the future. They invite you to tell them how COVID 19 is impacting
your family and invite you to share your experience, thoughts and
The COVID-19 IMPACTS: Veteran
Families Survey is open to anyone who is a Veteran or a member of a
Veteran family. We encourage
you to share the link with your networks and with Veterans and
Veteran families you know. For more information, contact
2020 Navy Bike Ride Goes
Each year, the Navy Bike Ride,
held in the Ottawa, works to celebrate Canadian veterans and the
sacrifices that they made, while raising funds to support them and
their families. In honour of those who have served in the Battle of
the Atlantic, this year’s Navy Bike Ride is dedicated to their
remembrance and Veterans Affairs Canada is proud to be a supporting
partner of this event.
During the Battle of the
Atlantic 75 years ago, the Canadian Navy and Merchant Marine devoted
their service and bravery, risking their lives to ensure critical
supplies would reach their destination. This exhaustive effort saw
more than 25,000 voyages undertaken, showing inspiring courage and
As our country now faces a new
challenge, in battling the spread of COVID-19, the Navy Bike Ride
has expanded, moving online. To honour those who have served Canada,
while ensuring the safety of all Canadians we encourage the Veteran
community, their families and friends, and the Canadian public to
participate in a virtual bike ride. By registering at
navybikeride.ca, you can cycle at your own pace and schedule,
between 13 June, 2020 and 30 August, 2020. Each ride will help in
reaching the 25,000 bike ride goal, to remember those essential
The proceeds from this
important event will be donated to the Royal Canadian Naval
Benevolent Fund (RCNBF), as well as Support our Troops.
COVID-19: New Canada Border
Services Agency Travel App
We would also like to take the
opportunity to share for awareness that a new travel app, called
ArriveCAN, is now available for use by travellers entering Canada.
The ArriveCAN mobile
application and accessible web app, developed by the Public Health
Agency of Canada and the Canada Border Services Agency, provides a
digital way for all travellers entering Canada to easily and
securely submit their information and complete a self-assessment of
symptoms up to 48 hours before they arrive in Canada.
The ArriveCAN app is available
for free on Google Play and Apple App stores. The use of ArriveCAN
will help the Government of Canada communicate with travellers via
push notifications, and for those travellers required to quarantine
or isolate, to promote and verify their compliance with requirements
under the Quarantine Act and to record any voluntary report of
symptoms of COVID-19 during their 14-day quarantine period.
Stakeholder Engagement and
Outreach Team Veterans Affairs
À tous les intervenants et
membres du Groupe consultatif,
L’équipe de Mobilisation et
sensibilisation des intervenants est heureuse de vous transmettre de
l’information sur trois initiatives liées à COVID-19.
SONDAGE SUR LES CONSÉQUENCES
DE LA COVID-19 : les familles des vétérans
La Fondation La Patrie gravée
sur le cœur et l’Institut Vanier de la famille mènent une sondage
pour recueillir des renseignements et des commentaires auprès des
familles des vétérans afin de savoir comment elles se portent, ce
qu’elles font et comment elles entrevoient l’avenir. Ils vous
invitent à leur dire quelles sont les conséquences de la COVID-19
sur votre famille et vous invitent à partager votre expérience, vos
réflexions et vos idées.
Sondage sur les conséquences
de la COVID-19 : les familles des vétérans est ouverte aux vétérans
et aux membres de la famille des vétérans.
Nous vous encourageons à
partager le lien avec les gens de votre réseau ainsi qu’avec les
vétérans et leur famille. Pour de plus amples renseignements,
veuillez nous écrire à l’adresse email@example.com.
Le Défi-vélo de la Marine 2020
passe en mode virtuel
Chaque année, le Défi-vélo de
la Marine, qui se déroule à Ottawa, vise à honorer les vétérans
canadiens et à souligner les sacrifices qu’ils ont faits, tout en
recueillant des fonds pour les soutenir ainsi que leur famille. En
l’honneur de ceux qui ont servi lors la bataille de l’Atlantique, le
Défi-vélo de la Marine de cette année est dédié à leur mémoire, et
Anciens Combattants Canada est fier d’être partenaire de cette
Durant la bataille de
l’Atlantique il y a 75 ans, les membres de la Marine canadienne et
de la marine marchande ont offert leur service dévoué et fait preuve
de bravoure, risquant leur vie pour veiller à ce que les fournitures
essentielles atteignent leur destination. Ils ont ainsi effectué
plus de 25 000 trajets lors de cette période, faisant preuve d’un
courage et d’une résilience inspirants.
Alors que notre pays doit
relever un nouveau défi, celui de vaincre la propagation de la
COVID-19, le Défi-vélo de la Marine a pris de l’ampleur, passant en
mode virtuel. Pour honorer ceux qui ont servi le Canada, tout en
assurant la sécurité de tous les Canadiens, nous encourageons les
membres de la communauté des vétérans, les membres de leur famille
et leurs amis, ainsi que le grand public canadien à participer à une
randonnée à vélo virtuelle. En vous inscrivant au defivelomarine.ca,
vous pouvez pédaler à votre propre rythme et selon votre
disponibilité, entre le 13 juin 2020 et le 30 août 2020. Chaque
randonnée sera comptabilisée pour atteindre l’objectif de 25 000
randonnées à vélo, en l’honneur de ces trajets qui ont joué un rôle
Les profits de cette activité
importante seront versés à la Caisse de bienfaisance de la Marine
royale canadienne (CBMRC), ainsi qu’à Appuyons nos troupes.
COVID-19 : Nouvelle
application ArriveCAN de l’Agence des services frontaliers du Canada
Nous aimerions également
profiter de l’occasion pour vous informer qu’une nouvelle
application de voyage, appelée ArriveCAN, est maintenant disponible
pour les voyageurs qui entrent au Canada.
L’Agence de la santé publique
du Canada et l’Agence des services frontaliers du Canada ont
développé l’application mobile et l’application Web ArriveCAN. Ces
outils visent à permettre à tous les voyageurs entrant au Canada de
soumettre facilement leurs renseignements numériques de façon
sécuritaire et de remplir l’auto évaluation de symptômes jusqu’à 48
heures avant leur arrivée au Canada.
Vous pouvez télécharger
gratuitement l’application ArriveCAN à partir des boutiques Google
Play et Apple App. Cet outil permettra au gouvernement du Canada de
communiquer avec les voyageurs au moyen d’avis et, pour les
voyageurs qui doivent se mettre en quarantaine ou s’isoler, de
promouvoir et de vérifier le respect des exigences de la Loi sur la
mise en quarantaine, en plus de signaler toute divulgation
volontaire de symptômes de la COVID 19 pendant leur période de
quarantaine de 14 jours.
L’Équipe de mobilisation et
sensibilisation des intervenants
Anciens Combattants Canada
Charles Scott July 14 at 10:40
VVi 16 Jul 2020 no
veterans and Canadians,
You may recall that I went
public with my battle with VAC in May 2020. I took to Twitter to
spread awareness of veterans issues.
Learn how to connect with VAC from home | Apprenez comment
communiquer avec ACC de chez vous
VVi 08 Jul 2020
(Le français suit)
We are offering online
information sessions about My VAC Account. The focus of these
sessions will be on ways to connect with VAC from your home;
applying for benefits or services; setting up direct deposit; and
showing you all the resources available in My VAC Account. Plus
there will be an opportunity for you to ask questions.
Please share with anyone who
may be interested and the details are below:
Here are the details:
When: Wednesday, 22 July 2020
from 5-7 pm EDT (English session)
Thursday, 23 July 2020 from
5-7 pm EDT (French session)
Who: Sessions are open to all
What: My VAC Account is a
secure, authenticated web application that allows Veterans, CAF and
RCMP members to access VAC services from anywhere, and at any time.
Family members who are receiving benefits directly from VAC can also
sign up for My VAC Account.
How: To register for the
online webinar session: 1.
Open the link 2. Enter your
name and email address. 3.
Click “Register”. 4. A
confirmation email will be sent to you with a link to join the
session when it starts. A reminder email will be automatically sent
with the link prior to the date of the session.
Note: If you are joining with a smartphone or tablet you will need
to download the WebEx application.
If you need help joining the
On the left navigation bar of
the WebEx home page, click "Support"
Call 1-800-226-6338 or 613-941-9554
Please feel free to share this
with anyone who may be interested in joining. If you have any
questions, please send them to the My VAC Account team at
Stakeholder Engagement and
Outreach Team Veterans Affairs
Anciens Combattants Canada
offrira des séances d’information en ligne sur Mon dossier ACC. Les
séances porteront sur les méthodes de communication avec ACC de chez
vous, la façon de soumettre des demandes de prestations ou de
services, et les ressources que l’on peut trouver dans Mon dossier
ACC. Vous aurez également la possibilité de poser des questions.
Veuillez transmettre ce message à toute personne qui pourrait
vouloir y participer.
Voici les détails des séances
: Quand : Le mercredi 22
juillet 2020, de 17 h à 19 h HAE (en anglais)
Le jeudi 23 juillet 2020, de
17 h à 19 h HAE (en français)
Qui : Les séances sont
ouvertes à tous.
Quoi : Mon dossier ACC est une
application Web authentifiée et sécuritaire qui permet aux vétérans,
ainsi qu’aux membres des FAC et de la GRC d’accéder aux services
d’ACC à tout moment et de n’importe quel endroit. Les membres de la
famille qui reçoivent des avantages directement d’ACC peuvent
également s’inscrire à Mon dossier ACC.
Comment : Pour vous inscrire à
la séance en ligne : 1. Cliquez
sur le lien 2. Entrez votre nom
et votre adresse de courriel.
1. Cliquez pour vous joindre à la séance (Register).
2. Un courriel de confirmation
vous sera envoyé vous donnant le lien à suivre pour joindre la
séance lorsqu’elle commencera. Un courriel de rappel comprenant le
lien vous sera envoyé automatiquement avant la date de la séance.
Remarque : Si vous participez à la séance sur un téléphone
intelligent ou une tablette, vous devrez télécharger l’application
Si vous avez besoin d’aide
pour joindre la séance :
Cliquez sur « Soutien » à
gauche de la barre de navigation de WebEx;
OU Composez le 1‑800‑226‑6338
ou le 613‑941‑9554.
N’hésitez pas à transmettre le
présent message à toute personne qui souhaiterait assister à la
séance. Si vous avez des questions, veuillez les poser à l’équipe de
Mon dossier ACC par courriel à l’adresse suivante :
L’équipe de Mobilisation et
sensibilisation des intervenants
Anciens Combattants Canada
Passing of John Labelle
01 Jul 2020
Just found out today, that
back in Dec we lost a good man, John Labelle.
John was the lead advocate on
reversing the CFSA Clawback. He advocated to his very last day.
Personally, I will miss working with this dedicated veteran. I will
miss his friendship.
Link to Departmental plan to address wait times / Lien vers le plan
ministériel visant à réguler les temps d’attente
VVi 30 Jun 2020
Dear Stakeholders and Advisory
As you have heard me say
before, tackling the backlog is my top priority. With that in mind,
I am pleased to share with you the Department’s plan to address wait
times: Timely Disability Benefit Decisions: Strategic Direction for
Improving Wait Times. This plan focuses on the tactics and
initiatives in progress to improve wait times for Veterans applying
for Disability Benefits.
I wanted to share this
response directly with you, our stakeholders and advisory group
members, so you can see exactly how we plan to address this issue,
including the concrete steps we will be taking in the coming months.
There is no one single
initiative that will reduce wait times. This is why our plan
includes hiring, digital solutions, innovation, all in an integrated
approach. In the plan you will see details on initiatives like our
Veterans Benefit Teams—integrated teams that will serve as
one-stop-shops for all applications, reducing the potential wait
time at each step of the process.
We encourage you to read the
full plan and share it on your social media channels.
Your support in helping us inform the Veterans community and your
advocacy on their part is much appreciated.
Minister of Veterans Affairs and
Associate Minister of National Defence
Chers intervenants et membres des groupes consultatifs,
Comme je l’ai déjà dit, la
prise en charge de l’arriéré est ma priorité absolue. Dans cette
optique, je suis heureux de vous communiquer la réponse récente du
Ministère au rapport du Comité permanent des anciens combattants au
sujet de la façon dont nous réduirons les temps d’attente : Prise de
décisions en temps opportun relatives aux prestations d’invalidité –
Orientation stratégique pour améliorer les temps d’attente. Ce plan
est axé sur les tactiques et les initiatives en cours visant à
améliorer les temps d’attente pour les vétérans qui présentent une
demande de prestations d’invalidité.
Je tenais à transmettre cette
réponse directement à vous, à nos intervenants et aux membres des
groupes consultatifs, y compris les mesures concrètes que nous
prendrons au cours des prochains mois, afin que vous puissiez voir
exactement comment nous planifions régler ce problème.
Une initiative unique ne
suffirait pas pour réduire les temps d’attente. C’est pourquoi notre
plan comprend l’embauche, les solutions numériques et l’innovation,
selon une approche intégrée. Le plan contient les renseignements sur
les initiatives comme nos équipes intégrées responsables des
prestations aux vétérans qui serviront de guichets uniques pour
toutes les demandes, ce qui réduira le temps d’attente possible à
chaque étape du processus.
Nous vous encourageons à lire
la réponse complète et à la partager sur vos réseaux de médias
Je vous remercie de nous aider
à informer la communauté des vétérans et votre groupe consultatif.
Ministre des Anciens Combattants et
ministre associé de la Défense nationale