Monday, May 27, 2024

Veterans’ support consultation begins

A proposal intended to make it simpler for veterans, their families and whānau to access services is out for public consultation, Defence announced today.

It said Veterans’ Affairs wants to see improvements in the sharing of veterans’ information between government agencies, suggesting an Approved Information Sharing Agreement (AISA) be established.

Deputy Head of Veterans’ Affairs, Marti Eller says having up-to-date information is key to ensuring the best outcomes for veterans.

“Veterans come into contact with a number of government agencies and each agency knows something about that veteran’s life which might influence the support they receive,” Ms Eller said.

“Often support or entitlements are based on what is happening, or has happened, in a veteran’s life. If organisations have current information about veterans, they can give them the best available support. And if circumstances change, then their support can be adapted.

“For example, if a veteran has a relationship change, or has a child in education, they and their whānau may be eligible for different entitlements.”

The proposed Veterans’ Affairs AISA aims to reduce the paperwork for veterans, and make it easier for them to access support from Veterans’ Affairs and other supporting government agencies.

To ensure privacy is protected, the AISA would specify which information can be shared, and by which government agencies. This information would only be shared between agencies involved in the AISA and Veterans’ Affairs – not between each agency.

The proposal is also in line with the recently announced Te Arataki mō te Haura Ngākau mō ngā Mōrehu a Tū me ō rātou Whānua | The Veteran, Family and Whānau Mental Health and Wellbeing Policy Framework: https://www.veteransaffairs.mil.nz/about-veterans-affairs/our-programmes/mental-health-framework/

“The proposed AISA shares one of the broad objectives of this policy framework – it encourages government agencies to provide joined-up support for veterans,” Ms Eller said.

“We’re excited by the potential benefits this AISA could bring our veterans. But as a first step we need to understand what the veteran community thinks and feels about it. We’d love to hear from them.”

For more information about the proposed AISA, visit www.veteransaffairs.mil.nz/aisa

Consultation is now open on the proposal, and closes at 5pm on 7 October 2022.

To have your say, email comments to VANZPOL@nzdf.mil.nz or post them to Veterans’ Affairs Policy Team at PO Box 5146, Wellington 6140, New Zealand. 

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