Delays relocating military families take too big a toll, ombudsman says
Pierre Daigle, ombudsman for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Forces, appears in Ottawa, Dec. 2, 2010. (Pawel Dwulit / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
The Canadian Press
Published Tuesday, May 28, 2013 11:58AM EDT
OTTAWA -- The ombudsman for Canada's military says it's taking far too long to solve financial claims related to the relocation of Canadian Forces members.
And Pierre Daigle says that's taking a toll on soldiers and their families who are often forced to wait more than two years to settle the bills from their moves.
In a report released today, Daigle found that CF members are too often left figuring out policies on their own, ultimately requiring adjudication to determine what is and isn't covered during mandatory relocation.
Daigle found the resulting delays in adjudicating claims and related grievances are linked to a shortage of staff, too much centralization, incomplete files and poor information management.
He's suggested 11 ways to fix the system, including bringing in more staff, improving communication with Forces members and putting in place clearer policies.
Both the chief of defence staff and the defence minister agree with the report's findings and have committed to hiring more staff and putting a plan in place to ease backlogs.