I am reaching out to let you know that the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel, The Hon Matt Keogh MP, has today announced that the Government will be undertaking consultation with the veteran community and other stakeholders about a proposed pathway to simplify the veterans’ legislative framework: Veterans’ Legislation Reform Consultation Pathway takes shape | Minister for Veterans’ Affairs (dva.gov.au) .
As you know, the Interim Report of the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide found that the complexity of the veterans’ system is adversely affecting the mental health of veterans. The proposal being put forward for consultation by the Government is for a future model where all claims would be considered under the existing Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004, rather than the three legislative schemes as is currently the case. This proposal would effectively implement many of the reforms recommended by the Productivity Commission in its 2019 report A Better Way to Support Veterans, with simpler outcomes.
Attached is a booklet that outlines the need for reform and further details about the proposal.
Information about the consultation process can be found at https://www.dva.gov.au/legislationconsultation2023.
The Minister and the Department will be undertaking direct consultation with key ex-service organisations around the country. While details of these consultations are still being finalised, there will be an opportunity for you and your members to participate in these processes.
The Department will also be consulting ex-service organisations through the National Consultative Framework and other key forums. In addition, consultation with veterans and their families, ADF members and other key stakeholders will be undertaken through webinars.
Written submissions from any interested parties, have also been invited, by 12 May 2023. These can be made through the consultation webpage at https://www.dva.gov.au/legislationconsultation2023 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Faxed and posted submissions will also be accepted – see the website page for relevant details.
I encourage you to put forward the views of your organisation about the proposal, and you are also welcome to provide your personal views through one of the channels above.
We will continue to update you how consultation is proceeding at our future meetings.
Department of Veterans’ Affairs