Funding Announced to Address Wait Times for Veterans

The Minister of Veterans Affairs announced funding February 23 of $139.6 million over two years to extend temporary positions as part of action to reduce processing times for disability benefit applications at Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC).

Between 2015-16 and 2019-20, VAC experienced a 40% increase in disability benefit applications, including an increase of more than 75% in first applications. In June 2020, the Department released its strategy to address the long-standing issue of processing times for benefits, and hired more than 350 temporary employees dedicated to address the backlog. Combined with improvements to the decision-making process, the Department has reduced the backlog by 44%, from 23,000 to just under 13,000.

By March 2022, VAC expects to have cut the number of applications waiting longer than its 16-week service standard by half (11,500) and to about 5,000 by spring 2023.

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