Jack Passings – August 2019

The following Sailors ‘Crossed the Bar’ during the month of August 2019. Details of funerals etc can be found by clicking HERE.

RHODES, David Hugh
HOLLIS Tom
MARTIN Terence (Terry) WOMEA

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35 Servicewomen Evacuated From Royal Navy Ships Due to Pregnancy

The figures are only related to those pregnant servicewomen who were evacuated by UK Defence Ministry flights, with female sailors who had to return home on their own not recorded. At least 35 sailors have been airlifted from Royal Navy ships since 2005 after discovering they were pregnant, according to freedom of information documents obtained by the Daily Star. The documents revealed that the servicewomen were “medically evacuated” from operational duty after becoming pregnant and that about 18 warships were involved.

Some of the pregnant sailors were specifically airlifted from the state-of-the-art destroyer HMS DUNCAN, which arrived en route to the Persian Gulf, and the HMS OCEAN. All the servicewomen reportedly became pregnant when on duty or “unknowingly conceived onshore,” the documents claimed. The Daily Star cited an unnamed defence source as admitting that “relationships do occur” and that “providing the intimate side takes place onshore it isn’t usually a problem”. “But if a couple is found to be having a physical relationship while at sea they will probably both be disciplined and removed from
the ship,” the source added They also pointed out that “the welfare of our personnel is of the utmost importance,” and that “to suggest personnel become pregnant while serving on an operation is pure speculation.” The source was referring to the fact that crews of all Royal Navy ships are obliged to stick to a tough no-touching rule which even pertains to
married couples serving on the same vessels. Source: Sputnik

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Government extends support for veterans

Minister for Veterans Ron Mark, has today announced that all veterans who served in the Former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Timor-Leste and the Solomon Islands are now eligible for support and services from Veterans’ Affairs.

“Veterans’ Affairs has been reviewing deployments after 1974 to check whether they should qualify as operational service under the Veterans’ Support Act 2014,” says Ron Mark.

“So far 38 deployments have been reviewed, with over 70 more reviews to go. Today’s announcement will affect around 1600 people. While some of these people will already qualify for veterans’ support from other deployments, for some this will be the first time they are able to receive support from Veterans’ Affairs.

“Previously, only a limited number of specific operations in these locations were covered under the Act. From now on, the entire geographical area where operations occurred will be covered.

“For example, previous declarations relating to Timor-Leste have covered only land-based operations. This declaration means that Naval personnel who served in the waters off Timor-Leste are now eligible for cover under the Act.

“This is helping to level the playing field for many New Zealand veterans.

“Since the legislation change in 2014, many new factors are now considered when assessing if someone has been at significant risk of harm on a deployment. The review is running the ruler over post-1974 deployments to see if any that haven’t previously made the cut would now qualify.

“These declarations were made possible by the recent passing of the Veterans’ Support Amendment Act, which corrected a drafting error in the original 2014 legislation

“The recent amendment had unanimous support in Parliament, and I thank all members of the House for the expedited process that took place. That demonstrated how revered our veterans are by New Zealanders, and how united Parliament is in ensuring there is adequate support for them when they return home,” Ron Mark said.

WHEN ARE THEY GOING TO REVIEW PRE 1974 DEPLOYMENTS?  These deployments were also mentioned in parliament during the second reading of the Amendment Bill to the Veterans Support Act and to date we have received no notification/acknowledgement that Veterans Affairs are going to review pre-1974 deployments.  We will then see how revered our Veterans really are.  Come on Veteran Affairs.

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New Deployments Acknowledged – Veterans Affairs

The following is advice from Veteran Affairs

As you know some legislation needed to be passed earlier this year to clear the way for the Minister for Veterans to retrospectively declare as qualifying operational service those deployments which had started or concluded before the Veterans’ Support Act came into effect in late 2014.

The necessary legislation––the Veterans’ Support Amendment Act 2019––was passed in June. Once this had happened, Veterans’ Affairs was able to immediately resume its review of deployments post-1974 which are not at present considered to be qualifying operational service.

I am pleased to let you know that the first retrospective declarations of qualifying operational service since the new Act passed have now been made by the Minister, and they were gazetted yesterday.

All NZDF personnel who served in deployments to the Former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (1 January 1992 – 31 July 2019), Timor-Leste (1 August 1999 – 31 July 2019), and the Solomon Islands (1 April 2000 – 31 July 2019) will now be eligible for support and services from Veterans’ Affairs. Previously only a limited number of operations in these places were covered.

These declarations and others which are made in the future will specify geographical areas where service has taken place, rather than naming specific operations, and this will make it clear exactly who is being recognised in the declarations.

As an example, previous declarations relating to Timor-Leste have covered only land-based operations. This week’s declaration means that naval personnel who served in the waters off Timor-Leste are also now eligible for cover under the Veterans’ Support Act.

There are still a number of other deployments not at present covered by the Act which we are reviewing, so further declarations are likely.

 

 

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Upside down flag rookie mistake: navy

How many times in your naval career have you seen this happen?

A picture of a Royal Canadian Navy ship flying upside down flag raised some eyebrows over the weekend, but officials say it was an accident.

A keen-eyed social media user snapped a picture of HMCS Fredericton and HMCS Charlottetown docked in Halifax, only Charlottetown’s Canadian flag was flipped.

Flying a flag upside down can be an act of desecration or a sign of distress, but in this case, the navy says it’s neither.

Capt. Mark Greatti, who speaks for Maritime Forces Atlantic, said the vessel recently had a new duty crew come on board, and a novice seaman on ceremonial duty simply made an error.

Greatti said the error was corrected as soon as it was noticed and the sailor responsible was made aware and received extra training.

Greatti said the way the flags are folded can sometimes make it hard for a new member to notice what direction it’s facing before it’s too late — that’s why they practice.

“A new person can easily make that mistake,” he said.

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Written Questions – Veterans Update

You will be aware that 60 plus written question was asked in our parliament of Ron Mark, Minister for Veterans by Dan Bidois, MP for Northcote.  The questions were around the 60+ recommendations made by Professor Ron Patterson on completion of his nationwide review of the Veterans Support Act.   Ron Mark did not respond to each of the questions posed but provided a blanket response to cover the questions.  Here is his response.

Hon Ron Mark (Veterans (Minister – Ron Mark)) replied: The recommendations of the Paterson Report do not provide neat prescriptions for changes to legislation, policies or practice. They range from public policy matters to legislative reform and from process to operational matters.

Some may be actioned by officials through process or operational changes and do not require Government action. Others would require detailed policy consideration which could lead to, or require, legislative change.

All of the recommendations are kept under regular review and proposals to address them are in various stages of development. I will be making further statements on the progress of this work in due course.

I will leave it up to you to decide which recommendations have been accepted, which recommendations have been actioned, which ones have been included in current processes, which ones have been included in policy, which ones do not require Government action, which ones have been referred on to other organisations, which ones require legislative change and what does ‘in due course’ mean.

There were also 3 questions asked of Ron Mark about the recommendations of the Veterans Advisory Board which completed their deliberations about ‘What is a Veteran and How is New Zealand going to recognise these veterans’. Their review was completed on 30 June 2019. His response to all 3 questions is as follows:

Hon Ron Mark (Veterans (Minister – Ron Mark)) replied: I received an interim report from the Veterans’ Advisory Board at the end of June. I am considering it, and plan to discuss the report and its recommendations with my Cabinet colleagues in the coming weeks.

I will be making further statements on the progress of this work in due course.

A large number of Servicemen and women have been waiting years for the answer to this question and again I will leave it up to you to determine what does ‘in due course’ mean.

One Member of Parliament is not sitting on his hands and is asking pertinent questions of the Minister for Veterans Affairs with regard to the Veterans Advisory Board and the Ron Patterson Review of the Veterans Support Act.   At last, we have an MP  who is taking up the issues which are dear to all ex-servicemen and women.  Bravo Zulu Dan Bidois MP for Northcote.

Click on this link to view the questions

Ministers have six working days to provide a written answer to each question. Each answer is first sent to the MP who asked the question. Three days later, the answers are published on Parliament’s website.

So come on all you servicemen and women instead of leaving it up to a few to ask questions, seek out your local MP and request that he/she ask the questions which you are too afraid to ask.  Sadly, it is a trait of many servicemen and women to be lazy in this regard and leave it up to the few who are willing to take up the mantle.  If your service in support of your Country means something to you then get off your backside and do something.

There were also 3 questions asked about the recommendations of the Veterans Advisory Board which completed their deliberations about ‘What is a Veteran and How is New Zealand going to recognise these veterans’ . His response is

 

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Jack Passings – July 2019

The following Sailors ‘Crossed the Bar’ during the month of July 2019. Details of funerals etc can be found by clicking HERE.

MOSSMAN, Henry Wilmot (Harry)
SUTCLIFFE Richard John (Dick) Able Seaman
EALES, Geoffrey Manville (Geoff) Marine Engineer
AHLFELD, Walter Frederick Stoker
ANDREWS, Alfred Allan (Allan)
BERRY Anton Guiani (Tony). Tel.
ROSEWARNE, James (Jim): Able Seaman
GRAF, Vicki
SOLOMON, John Te Tarehu
ROBB, Allan
HOWDEN, Robert Gordon AB
ROWARTH, Barbara (nee Macky). WRNZNS 4TH OFFICER

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