Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Veterans' Support Way Too Little Way Too Late

Former servicemen and women under the retirement age but unable to work are to receive a new benefit as part of a new veterans support package worth $12m a year.
Included therein:
+ a new Veterans' Weekly Income Compensation, for veterans below the retirement age but unable to work, which will be paid at 80% of the average wage.
+ those who accessed that benefit for more than 10 years until retirement would then receive a lump sum of $25,000 "in recognition of their circumstances resulting from service".
+ two separate schemes under the revamped War Pensions Act. All current veterans would be covered by Scheme One, which maintains current services and provision. Scheme Two would apply from 2015 for future veterans or those who hadn't claimed yet.
Prime Minister John Key: "Operating two schemes will allow us to provide for modern rehabilitation practices for future veterans without impaction on current veterans." ( "Impaction"??? Where DID this man go to school?!! He obviously does not know that impaction is a pathological condition when an impassable mass of stone-like faecal matter collects in the rectum.) "These are very brave New Zealanders, they've put their lives on the line in defence of our country. Given the commitments we made, we've done everything we can within the financial constraints we faced to try and honour their commitment."
What a load of "impaction"! Do the maths, work out how little extra this will give our service veterans, then look at what they need in their last years and what we as a nation owe them. THEN let's talk about "impaction"!
As I've written several times before, the support NZ gives its veterans is shameful and pathetic. Any government which regards these efforts as truly "honouring their commitment" does not deserve to be comfortably sitting (shitting?) in Parliament...

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