Ottawa taps UBC president to seek deal with disabled vets over benefits
OTTAWA — The federal government has appointed the president of the University of British Columbia to help resolve a dispute with Canadian Forces veterans over long-term disability benefits.
Stephen Toope, a former dean of law at McGill University, will serve as the federal representative in talks to resolve a class-action lawsuit that aims to stop federal benefit clawbacks.
“The well-being of both our serving and retired members is important for our government,” Defence Minister Peter MacKay said in a statement.
“This appointment further underlines our intent to work towards a positive resolution in this matter.”
A Federal Court ruling in May found Ottawa was acting illegally by clawing back long-term disability benefits from veterans who were also receiving pain and suffering payments and other awards.
The clawbacks ended in July, and the “vast majority” of those affected have seen the results reflected in their benefit cheques, MacKay said during a news conference last week in New Brunswick