PERIODICAL - Jun 2009

Issue No: 200926

 

Table of Contents

What is VeteranVoice.info?
SISIP Clawback Update
SISIP Clawback Court Action Update
SISIP Clawback Latest News Articles
How you can help!
Recommended Links

www.VeteranVoice.info


Veteran Voice.info

VVi is for you, all veterans, regardless of whether you belong to a veteran organization or not. VVi is a distribution centre, a conduit for making sure that the information you need as a veteran is there for you in a timely fashion. Our aim is to provide a forum for all Canadian veterans, serving members and their families to have access to information pertaining to veteran rights.

VVi is an independent site, not associated with any governmental department, agency or veteran organization. VeteranVoice.info is maintained by independent contributions.

 

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SISIP Clawback

SISIP Clawback & Legal Action Update

The Class Action was initiated in March of 2007 on behalf of myself, Dennis Manuge, and all other disabled veterans whose SISIP Long Term Disability Benefits are reduced by the amount of the monthly VAC Disability Pension they receive under the Pension Act.

On May 20, 2008, the Federal Court of Canada certified the claim as a Class Action and defined the Class as follows:

All former members of the Canadian Forces whose long term disability benefits under the SISIP policy number 901102 were reduced by the amount of their VAC disability benefits received pursuant to the Pension Act from April 17, 1985 to date.

This legal action brought against the Crown was a last resort after an exhaustive letter writing campaign. Targeting the appropriate political individuals, MP’s, ministers of DND and VAC, and the PM’s office, a large number of Veterans pleaded with the political and bureaucratic machine to act on Andre Marin’s investigation into, and his subsequent October, 2003 special report,

 “Unfair Deductions from SISIP Payments to Former CF Members”, calling for an immediate end to this “profoundly unfair’ treatment towards Canada’s disabled Veterans.

The impact on the estimated 6500 Canadian Forces disabled Veterans (members of the class) due to the SISIP Clawback has been extreme. In many cases the impact has been horrific. These individuals, who are already disadvantaged due to their varying levels of mental and physical injuries, have gone bankrupt, lost their homes, lost their spouses, children, and most importantly, they have lost their own dignity and self-respect.

While trying to negotiate through the medical release process, applying for and experiencing long waits for VAC and SISIP LTD benefits, the stress and frustration in a majority of cases has left many of us emotionally scarred for life.

This stress and frustration has been compounded yet further due to the lack of action by the government of the day, who has the power to fix this issue immediately, but simply refuses to come to the table and discuss settlement so that we can get on with our lives.

Parliament has previously spoken with a majority vote in November of 2006, supporting a Private members bill, initiated by Mr. Peter Stoffer, NDP MP for Sackville Eastern Shore, calling for an immediate end to the SISIP Clawback. No action by the government on the vote.

Three successive DND Ombudsmen have re-iterated the issue to several DND Ministers since Mr. Marin’s special report and have asked theses ministers to get on with fixing the issue. In fact, Mr. Yves Cote, even advised then DND Minister, Gordon O’Connor, that lack of action to remedy the clawback may in fact place the government in Breach of Section 15.1 of The Charter of Rights and freedoms. No action by the government.

On May 7, 2008 I testified in front of the Senate sub-committee on Veterans Affairs along with Sean Bruyea (disabled Veteran and advocate) and our lawyer, Mr. Peter Driscoll. With the full support of the Royal Canadian Legion, Dominion President, Jack Frost and The Service Bureau Director, Mr. Pierre Allard we educated the sitting committee on the history of the SISIP Clawback and the negative impact it has on those of us affected. Subsequently, the committee’s Report on Reductions of Services Income Security Insurance Plan Long Term Disability Benefits, released in June, 2008 came to the very same conclusion as the Ombudsman’s original report of October 2003. This clawback is real, it is unfair, and it needs to be corrected immediately. No action by the government.

Since the certification of Manuge Vs Her Majesty the Queen in the federal court of Canada on May 20, 2008 the Federal Court of Appeals heard and rendered a decision reversing the certification of the case as a class action. These left us with two directions to go; apply in federal court for a Judicial Review in my name only, and apply for leave to be heard in the Supreme Court of Canada on the technical issue on which the crown’s FCA appeal was won.

The Crown, relying on Canada v. Grenier, 2005 FCA 348, objected to the action on the ground that Mr. Manuge should have proceeded by way of judicial review since the challenge involved a decision of a “federal board, commission or other tribunal” within the meaning of the Federal Courts Act, R.S.C. 1985, c. F-7. The Federal Court dismissed the objection and certified the proceeding as a class action, but the Federal Court of Appeal overturned the decision, holding that since Mr. Manuge’s claim sought to impugn the lawfulness of a joint decision of the Minister of National Defence and the Chief of the Defence Staff, Grenier applied and a prior judicial review proceeding was necessary. It granted Mr. Manuge 30 days to serve and file an application for judicial review and suspended the action until a final decision was made on the application.

From the SCC Case Summary- http://www.scc-csc.gc.ca/case-dossier/cms-sgd/sum-som-eng.aspx?cas=33103

On June 18, 2009 the following decision from the SCC was rendered.

 Decision on the application for leave to appeal, LeB De Cro, The application for leave to appeal from the judgment of the Federal Court of Appeal, Number A-262-08, 2009 FCA 29, dated February 3, 2009, is granted with costs to the applicant in any event of the cause.
Granted, costs to the applicant(s) in any event of the cause  

This simply means that the SCC will decide if the case can proceed as a class action or, if we have to continue as a judicial review and then be converted back into a class action. So an excellent delay tactic by the crown and their counsel to cause us, the class of disabled soldiers, to wait even longer to find a resolution to this issue. It also adds to the total cost of fixing this issue; a cost that will come from the Canadian taxpayers pocket through the Treasury Board.

To conclude with this update I would like to re-iterate to readers that I, Dennis Manuge, have instructed our lead counsel, Mr. Peter Driscoll, to invite the crown to sit down at any time during this process and discuss a settlement so we, the class, can move on with our lives. We do not want this to spend a decade tied up in various levels of the legal system and we certainly do not want to add to the cost for the Canadian Taxpayer. No action or movement by the government.

 

Dennis Manuge

 

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SISIP Clawback

Court Action Update

Dennis Manuge v. Her Majesty the Queen (F.C.) (Civil) (By Leave) (33103)

Leave to Appeal Granted

 

Latest press release is as follows:

 

SUPREME COURT OF CANADA -- JUDGMENTS IN APPEALS AND LEAVE APPLICATIONS
OTTAWA, 2009-06-18. THE SUPREME COURT OF CANADA HAS TODAY RENDERED JUDGMENT IN THE FOLLOWING APPEALS AND APPLICATIONS FOR LEAVE TO APPEAL.

FROM: SUPREME COURT OF CANADA (613) 995-4330
COUR SUPRÊME DU CANADA -- JUGEMENTS SUR APPELS ET DEMANDES D'AUTORISATION
OTTAWA, 2009-06-18. LA COUR SUPRÊME DU CANADA A RENDU JUGEMENT AUJOURD'HUI DANS LES APPELS ET LES DEMANDES D'AUTORISATION D'APPELS SUIVANTS.

SOURCE: COUR SUPRÊME DU CANADA (613) 995-4330
COMMENTS/COMMENTAIRES: comments@scc-csc.gc.ca
APPEALS / APPELS :

Reasons for judgment will be available shortly at: / Motifs de jugement disponibles sous peu à :
http://scc.lexum.umontreal.ca/en/2009/2009scc28/2009scc28.html
http://scc.lexum.umontreal.ca/fr/2009/2009csc28/2009csc28.html
32649 / 32650 Sa Majesté la Reine c. John Griffin - et entre - Sa Majesté la Reine c. Earl Roy Harris (Qc)
2009 SCC 28 / 2009 CSC 28
Coram: Les juges Binnie, LeBel, Deschamps, Fish, Abella, Charron et Rothstein

Les appels interjetés contre les arrêts de la Cour d'appel du Québec (Montréal), numéros 500-10-003154-059 et 500-10-003151-055, en date du 2 mai 2008, entendus le 14 novembre 2008, sont accueillis et les déclarations de culpabilité sont rétablies. Les juges LeBel et Fish sont dissidents.


The appeals from the judgments of the Court of Appeal of Quebec (Montréal), Numbers 500-10-003154-059 and 500-10-003151-055, dated May 2, 2008, heard on November 14, 2008, are allowed and the convictions are restored, LeBel and Fish JJ. dissenting.


APPLICATIONS FOR LEAVE / DEMANDES D'AUTORISATION :
Note for subscribers:
The summaries of the cases are available at http://www.scc-csc.gc.ca:
Click on Cases and on SCC Case Information, type in the Case Number and press Search. Click on the Case Number on the Search Result screen, and when the docket screen appears, click on "Summary" which will appear in the left column.

Alternatively, click on
http://scc.lexum.umontreal.ca/en/news_release/2009/09-06-15.2a/09-06-15.2a.html

Note pour les abonnés :
Les sommaires des causes sont affichés à l'adresse http://www.scc-csc.gc.ca :
Cliquez sur « Dossiers », puis sur « Renseignements sur les dossiers ». Tapez le no de dossier et appuyez sur « Recherche ». Cliquez sur le no du dossier dans les Résultats de la recherche pour accéder au Registre. Cliquez enfin sur le lien menant au « Sommaire » qui figure dans la colonne de gauche.

Autre façon de procéder : Cliquez sur
http://scc.lexum.umontreal.ca/fr/news_release/2009/09-06-15.2a/09-06-15.2a.html

GRANTED WITH COSTS / ACCORDÉES AVEC DÉPENS

Dennis Manuge v. Her Majesty the Queen (F.C.) (Civil) (By Leave) (33103)
(The application for leave to appeal is granted with costs to the applicant in any event of the cause. /
La demande d'autorisation d'appel est accordée avec dépens en faveur du demandeur quelle que soit l'issue de l'appel.) Coram: LeBel / Deschamps / Cromwell

 

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SISIP Clawback

Latest News Articles

A few of the news articles referring to the SISIP Clawback:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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You  Can Help!

All veterans are encouraged to pass information, opinions, links to self-help sites onto VVi. VeteranVoice.info is a distribution centre and we are dependant on others to pass information. This is your site. Tell other veterans about your site.  Email info@VeteranVoice.info .

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Recommended Links

 

Veterans Ombudsman: http://www.ombudsman-veterans.gc.ca/ 

Ombudsman Blog: http://www.ombudsman-veterans.gc.ca/blog-blogue/index-eng.cfm

 

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and War-Related Stress: http://www.vac-acc.gc.ca/content/mhealth/ptsd_warstress/ptsd_warstress_e.pdf 

 

 

Gulf War Illness Medical Research: http://www.veteranvoice.info/ARCHIVE/GWImedicalresearch.pdf 

 

 

WCG International HR Solutions

 

 

VAC Rehab Contractor: http://www.wcginternational.com/index.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   Call for Backup

 

 

 

VeteransofCanada.ca: http://www.veteransofcanada.ca

 

http://www.veteransofcanada.ca/ 

Reading Your Med File - http://www.veteranvoice.info/MyMedFile.htm

 

 

Canadian Army Veteran Motorcycle Units (The CAV): http://www.thecav.ca

 

The CAV WIA Initiative: http://www.thecav.ca/Documents/CAV%20Initiative_WIA%20Hospital%20Kit%20Packs/CAV_WIAHospitalKitPacks_Plan.htm

 

 

 

 

New CD

 

 

 

 

The CAV 

Highway of Heroes CD: (50% of all profit to assist wounded service members. CLICK HERE! )

 

 

 

Wounded Warriors Fund: http://www.woundedwarriors.ca/

 

 

Chosen Solder Program: www.trevlac.biz/Chosen_Soldier.htm

 

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