Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Veterans short-changed



Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson

Veterans short-changed

The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff.

“A review of the 1954 War Pensions Act by the Law Commission, set up by the Labour Government in 2008, recommended that all war veterans put in harm’s way in an overseas deployment should be eligible for a veteran’s pension.

“This pension is in place of, rather than on top of, New Zealand Superannuation. It confers some small benefits such as a lump sum payment on death, a Community Services Card and continuation of the pension if hospitalised. Most returned service personnel who want to go on to the veteran’s pension do so not because of the benefits but because they see that as honouring their service on behalf of their country.

“Veterans asked that the requirement of significant disability (52 per cent of total disability or more) be dropped, something the RNZRSA strongly endorsed.

“The Government however ignored the veterans’ submissions on this and said the recommendation should ‘not progress at this point in time’.

“It’s a cynical decision. Time is not on the side of World War II, Korean, Malayan and Vietnam veterans. Their numbers are rapidly declining as age takes its toll.

“As the RSA says, why should it be necessary to be ‘significantly’ disabled to qualify for the veterans’ pension?

“This year we commemorate the centenary of the start of World War I. There will be many expressions of gratitude for the service of our veterans. But rather than simple rhetoric, surely we can acknowledge the centenary and our veterans in a more tangible way by extending their eligibility for a veteran’s pension.

“The cost is small, $11 million this year declining to $8 million in three years’ time as ranks thin.

“The message it would send, however, is an important one. We do honour their service and will look after them in return for their putting themselves in harm’s way for their country”, Phil Goff said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Minister of Finance: Plan Shows $100 Billion Infrastructure Projects

Finance Minister Bill English has today launched the Government’s Ten Year Capital Intentions Plan (CIP) which shows a pipeline of $100.9 billion worth of infrastructure projects over the next decade. More>>


Werewolf: Safe Landings Gordon Campbell on the safety challenge to the Wellington runway extension.

The safety-related legal challenge revolves around the size of the 90 metre long Runway End Safety Area (RESA) being proposed for the runway extension. More>>


Environment Commissioner: We Need To Work Together On Climate Change And Farming

“The debate around agricultural emissions and the ETS has been polarised for too long,” said the Commissioner. “But the ETS is not the only way forward – there are other things that can be done.” More>>


NZ Super Fund: Seeking To Put A Market Price On Climate Change

Oct. 19 (BusinessDesk) - The New Zealand Superannuation Fund says it will devise a set of rules to assess investment winners and losers under climate change, a strategy that could rule out fossil fuels or producers such as current portfolio member Exxon ... More>>


Rejuvenation: Parata Will Not Contest 2017 Election

Education Minister and National List MP Hekia Parata has today announced that she will not be contesting the next election. She advised the Prime Minister of her decision earlier this year. More>>

Prisons Grow: Government Approves Plans For Increased Prison Capacity

Despite significant progress in reducing crime the number of prisoners has increased faster than projected. This is because the proportion of offenders charged with serious crimes has risen, meaning more people are being remanded in custody and serving more of their sentences in prison. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Plastic Bag Activism, And Street Harassment

Amusing to see the Act Party experiencing another outbreak of young fogey-ism. What has aroused the ire of Act Leader David Seymour this time is the introduction of a Greens private members bill to the ballot process, calling for a 15 cents levy on plastic bags to reduce pollution. More>>


Unclear Weapons: US Navy Ship Cleared To Visit NZ For Navy's 75th

United States Navy ship, the USS Sampson, has been given clearance to visit New Zealand next month by Prime Minister John Key... “The process for considering the visit by the USS Sampson is the same as that used for all ships attending the International Naval Review." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news