Parliament is currently considering the Veterans’ Support Bill, which would replace the War Pensions Act 1954 with new legislation to support veterans. I am writing to advise you that Veterans Affairs’ New Zealand (VANZ) is beginning public consultation on regulations under the Bill.
The Bill follows a Law Commission report on the Review of the War Pensions Act 1954.
The Law Commission recommended that two schemes be introduced to better cater for the needs of both elderly veterans and those of modern day and future deployments.
Scheme One will cover veterans serving up to and including Vietnam.
Scheme Two will cover service after Vietnam.
The main changes include:
- New and updated legislation replacing the War Pensions Act 1954
- the introduction of two coverage schemes, with the creation of ACC on 1 April 1974 being the point of division between the two schemes
- increasing eligibility for support services such as home help and lawn mowing, which will benefit an estimated 3,000 additional veterans and 1,100 surviving spouses or partners
- a Veterans’ Advisory Board and Specialist Medical Panel to provide the Minister with independent advice.
The Veterans’ Support Bill was introduced to Parliament on 14 October 2013. More information about the Bill is available on the VANZ website, at http://www.veteransaffairs.mil.nz/veterans-support-bill/index.html.
Regulations are laws made by the Governor-General, Ministers of the Crown and certain other bodies under powers conferred by an Act of Parliament. Regulations can deal with issues that are technical or that need to be updated regularly in the future.
The Bill includes a number of regulation-making powers. These can help to implement the Bill and give effect to the Government’s intention to better meet the needs of both older veterans who require assistance to remain in their own homes and veterans of modern-day deployments.
VANZ is interested in your organisation’s views on the proposals, and the view of your members.
VANZ has developed a public consultation paper seeking feedback on proposals for regulations on veteran’s and their families’ entitlements. I have attached a copy of the paper. The consultation will run between Wednesday 12 March 2014 and Sunday 13 April 2014. Submissions should be received no later than 5pm on Sunday 13 April 2014.
If your organisation or your members would like to make a submission, you can email VANZ at VANZ@nzdf.mil.nz. Please enter “Regulations Submission” in the subject line. Alternatively, you can contact us by post at:
Veterans’ Affairs New Zealand
PO Box 5146
The Minister of Veterans’ Affairs will report back to Cabinet later this year with recommendations and proposed regulations informed by this consultation.
Thank you again for your commitment to veterans and their families.
Click HERE to view Public Consultation Paper