Skip to comments.Diggers wounded more than once denied compo
Posted on 11/30/2010 5:23:20 PM PST by naturalman1975
SOLDIERS who suffer repeated wounds or injury on frontline service, including in Afghanistan, are being denied compensation under a government scheme.
The grouped assessment used by the Department of Veterans Affairs means that points allocated to a previous wound or injury can cancel out those for a later one. Diggers who have already been compensated for being hurt in a war zone face the prospect of being turned down if they are injured again on their return to active duty.
Lawyers for defence personnel affected by the anomaly are launching legal appeals against the government to secure payouts for them
The scheme was brought in by the Howard government to centralise entitlements for veterans, who had previously been covered by two older pieces of legislation.
But former veterans affairs minister Danna Vale, who introduced the points scheme, said it was never the Howard government's intention for veterans to be unable to combine their entitlements. "That was absolutely not what was intended," Ms Vale told The Australian. "John Howard and I were consistent and clear on this: that any conflict between the schemes would always be resolved by erring on the side of generosity to the veteran.
"That's what John Howard always said, and that's what I said in the second reading speech."
In that 2003 speech to parliament, Ms Vale was explicit: "A member who suffers an injury or illness after that date (July 2004) will be able to combine prior impairments from (previous schemes) the SRCA (Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Scheme) and the VEA (Veterans' Entitlements Act) with the new arrangements to get the best possible outcome."
(Excerpt) Read more at theaustralian.com.au ...
Ah, but you knew you weren't the interpreting legal authority all along, you nasty little liar.