Part-time soldiers wait a year for severance
OTTAWA - Part-time soldiers who leave the military are having to wait over a year for National Defence to process their severance pay in a troubled system that is to be investigated by the Canadian Forces ombudsman.
A spokeswoman says the backlog is the result of staffing shortages, which officials are trying to correct.
This is the latest in a series of grievances for reserve soldiers, who often face not only discrimination within the ranks because of their part-time status, but on an institutional level when it comes to benefits and care.
Ombudsman Pierre Daigle has written extensively about the treatment of reserve members, who hold civilian jobs but dedicate weekends and vacations to training with military.
His office has received numerous complaints about severance and pegs the waiting time between nine and 17 months.
A spokesman for the ombudsman, Jamie Robertson, says the delays are unfair and potentially place a financial burden on departing members and their families.
He says the ombudsman will conduct a systemic investigation this fall.