ARCHIVED - Message from the Ombudsman (January 30, 2012)

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Ombudsman's Office to Visit 3 Wing Canadian Forces Base Bagotville

We are pleased to be visiting 3 Wing Canadian Forces Base Bagotville on January 30th to February 3rd, as part of our ongoing effort to reach out to the members of Canada's Defence community where they live and work.

Whether it is defending Canada and Canadians, undertaking operations in Libya and elsewhere, or conducting demanding search and rescue missions, it has been a challenging time for the men and women of the Canadian Forces and the broader Defence community in Bagotville. Their contributions have been critical to Canada's military commitments and obligations here at home and around the world.

However, these contributions have come at a cost and we want everyone in Bagotville to know that we stand ready to help.

During our visit to Bagotville, we will meet with military members from various ranks and occupations, their families, caregivers and civilian employees to talk about the issues affecting them and to offer our assistance should they have any problems or concerns related to National Defence or the Canadian Forces.

Our visit will begin on Tuesday with meetings with 3 Wing senior leadership and chaplains. We will also have a town hall with Junior Non-Commissioned Members and meet with 3 Wing medical staff.

On Wednesday, we will hold two town halls, one with Senior Non-Commissioned Members and the other with Officers. We will also have an opportunity to meet with social workers and staff at the Joint Personnel Support Unit whose job it is to support and assist military members and their families. Later that evening, we will be gathering with the spouses and families of military members. Military families are national entities and they have an important role to play in maintaining the operational effectiveness of the Canadian Forces. Ensuring the fair treatment and overall well-being of Canada's military families - who sacrifice so much for their loved ones and their country - is a key priority for me and our office.

On Thursday, we will spend time with staff from the Bagotville Military Family Resource Centre and host a town hall session with civilian employees.

We look forward to our week in Bagotville and I invite anyone who has a concern with the way in which they have been treated by the Department or the Canadian Forces to speak to us while we are visiting.

Pierre Daigle

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