Veterans Affairs senior bureaucrats raked in bonuses while closing offices

Under our watch, this will NEVER happen AGAIN!!!

The Conservatives should never be in power again and where was the Liberal or NDP outrage? None of these parties know what’s best for Canadians.

Things like this disgust us. The Canadian Values Party will never let this happen again, but we need your support. Contact us and get involved.


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Senior Veterans Affairs bureaucrats were paid, on average, almost $15,000 each in bonuses even as they cut public service jobs, closed offices and faced off with wounded soldiers fed up with poor service from the department.

Veterans Ombudsman Guy Parent released a report this spring saying that families of ex-soldiers are kept in the dark about available programs and no one at Veterans Affairs is providing them with information

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Veterans Ombudsman Guy Parent released a report this spring saying that families of ex-soldiers are kept in the dark about available programs and no one at Veterans Affairs is providing them with information

The 63 executives received, on average, $14,778 in bonuses during the government’s 2014-2015 fiscal year, according to newly released figures provided to the Senate. The maximum bonus awarded was $34,682.

The cash was paid out as “at risk pay,” which means the bureaucrats achieved results in their jobs. Such payments were up slightly from the 2013-2014 fiscal year when 58 executives received at-risk pay, the figures noted. The average award during that period was $14,322.

In addition, in 2014-2015, eight of the top bureaucrats also received their regular bonuses; that cash payout averaged $5,555 each. That type of bonus had also increased since 2013-2014 when only five executives received such payments. Then the average amount was $4,180.

The information provided to the Senate doesn’t include details on who received the cash but it has traditionally been the deputy minister, assistant deputy ministers and other executives.

The figures do show that from 2005 to 2015 the maximum amounts being paid for at risk bonuses almost doubled, jumping to $34,682 from $17,430.

The number of non-executives who received performance pay also increased from 25 in 2005 to 53 in the 2014-2015 fiscal year. Their average payout was $5,323.

Liberal senator Percy Downe, whose question to the government resulted in the information being released, said he was surprised and disappointed about the payments.

The past decade has seen numerous complaints from veterans about poor treatment from the department. Those include breaches of their privacy by Veterans Affairs senior bureaucrats and denial of claims.

“It was a time when the department was having significant problems, closing offices, restricting benefits,” Downe said of the period covered by the payments. “The Privy Council Office decided that all these efforts were to be rewarded with bonuses, which would not only be shocking to veterans and their families but to most Canadians.”

Downe said the bonuses also count towards a bureaucrat’s pension, “so they are not only cash in hand, they are cash forever as a percentage of your pension.”

In March, Veterans Ombudsman Guy Parent released a report saying that families of ex-soldiers are kept in the dark about available programs and no one at Veterans Affairs is providing them with information.

Parent pointed out there is a lack of “direct and proactive communication with families” by the department.

Previously Parent raised questions about how Veterans Affairs treated families of former soldiers affected by the spraying of Agent Orange. He described the treatment as “scandalous” after federal bureaucrats denied the financial claims of spouses.

Another of his reports pointed out that some of Canada’s most severely injured soldiers were not being told by Veterans Affairs about all of the benefits they were eligible to receive.

During the Conservative government, the senior bureaucrats at Veterans Affairs oversaw the shutdown of nine offices across the country that provided support to former soldiers. That policy sparked outrage among veterans.

The Liberal government is reopening the offices.

Downe said he believes the payouts send the wrong message. There has been a lack of leadership from the department’s senior bureaucrats, who live in Ottawa, while the department headquarters is in Charlottetown, P.E.I., he added.

“There is a disconnect between the leadership the department requires and the leadership they’re getting,” said Downe, who has a home in Charlottetown. “And when you see these bonuses, you wonder what these payments are all about.”

Information is not yet available for the latest round of bonuses.

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