Thursday, 12 Feb 2009

Released on behalf of Minister for Veterans' Affairs

A number of people have expressed concerns about how the Department of Veterans' Affairs (DVA) treats voluntary work with community and welfare organisations under the Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986 (VEA), the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 (SRCA) and the Military, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 (MRCA).

There appears to be a belief that voluntary work is treated differently under SRCA and MRCA than it is under the VEA. Some people are concerned that undertaking voluntary work will trigger a review of incapacity payments. This is not the case.

To clarify the issue and reassure veterans wanting to do voluntary work, the Repatriation Commissioner, Brigadier Bill Rolfe AO (Retd), has written to a number of ex-service organisations and the Training and Information Program Committee Chairs to state:
* DVA is supportive of veterans undertaking voluntary work;
* Voluntary work is treated the same under all three Acts; and
* Undertaking voluntary work will not trigger a review of pension or incapacity payments.

A copy of Brigadier Rolfe's letter and policy statement is attached.

I would urge any veteran or veterans' representative to refer to this statement should they have any issues with the way such matters are being interpreted.

Alan Griffin
Minister for Veterans' Affairs

Repatriation Commission Letter to ESOs Feb.pdf
DVA Voluntary Work Statement attached to ESO letter.pdf