On the opening of the parliament, veterans across the country are continuing to mobilize to stop the closure of the nine Veterans Affairs offices by the Harper government that they rely on for face-to-face services. One veteran, who said he was a longtime Conservative, promised that he and thousands of other veterans will mobilize politically across Canada to hold the Harper dictatorship to account.
The action occurs as External Affairs Minister John Baird hypocritically denounces Ukraine for anti-democratic activity and the Canadian Forces has enlisted in the “Bell Let’s Talk” day about mental health. It’s being estimated that at least 2,750 veterans will suffer from severe post-traumatic stress disorder in the next few years out of the 5,900 new veterans released from the Canadian Forces who will suffer from mental health issues. The withdrawal of troops from occupying foreign countries and the establishment of an anti-war government would be a decisive contribution to alleviating stress and reducing suicides. Canadian Press has this story:
OTTAWA — A number of military veterans are in Ottawa today to denounce government plans to close Veterans Affairs district offices in communities across the country.
The veterans, along with the Public Service Alliance of Canada, are holding a news conference to warn that the closures will mean hardships for aging veterans forced to travel long distances for services.
Offices in Kelowna, B.C., Saskatoon, Brandon, Man., Thunder Bay, Ont., Windsor, Ont., Sydney N.S., Charlottetown and Corner Brooke, N.L., are scheduled to close Friday as the government moves to more online services.