Ombudsman Message: Progress Report on A Systemic Review of Compensation Options for Ill and Injured Reservists

In February 2016, this Office released A Systemic Review of Compensation Options for Ill and Injured Reservists.

Over the past decade, this Office has maintained a strong focus on Reserves, including on the provision of care, compensation and other benefits to ill and injured Reservists. Our 2008 report Reserved Care: An investigation into the Treatment of Injured Reservists identified concerns with the adequacy and consistency of care and benefits provided to injured Reservists.  In 2012, this Office published Reserved Care: A Follow Up into the Treatment of Injured Reservists, which raised new concerns regarding the policy and administration of Reserve Force - Compensation During A Period of Injury, Disease Or Illness.

Notwithstanding the release of these reports, this Office continued to receive complaints related to Reserve Force Compensation. Subsequently, this Office published A Systemic Review of Compensation Options for Ill and Injured Reservists in 2016.

This report and accompanying recommendations focused on three main areas:

  1. The governance and administration of Reserve Force Compensation;
  2. The Reserve Force Compensation process and reporting procedures; and
  3. The level of knowledge and awareness among Reservists of their entitlements available under Reserve Force Compensation and the Government Employees Compensation Act.

Little has been done on the part of the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces in terms of implementing the recommendations made in this report. In order to view the Progress Report, click here .

Recommendation 1 - Not Implemented - The Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces have not improved the governance and administration of the Reserve Force Compensation process:

  • No functional authority accountable for the Reserve Force Compensation process has been created;
  • Canadian Forces Military Personnel Instruction 20/04 continues to be under review. There is no expected date of completion;
  • The Reserve Force Compensation process has not been streamlined; and
  • A Defence Administrative Order Directive to codify the compensation process has not been created.

Recommendation 2 - Not Implemented – The Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces have not taken concrete steps to improve the knowledge and awareness of the compensation options available to ill and injured Reservists:

  • Although some information on Reserve Force Compensation has been made available on the Internet, resources have not been committed for the development and implementation of a communications plan, and training on compensation options has not been formalized.
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