By Simon JonesIn 2015 the Veterans Choice Program was created by the Howard Government in response to a national crisis.
The program gave veterans who had served their country in the Australian Defence Force a choice between being released and returning to the Australian Armed Forces.
Veterans who were released could only apply for re-employment in the Defence Force, where they would still receive benefits.
In 2017 the Government expanded the program to allow the same people who served in the Armed Forces to receive benefits as those who did not, and in 2018 it allowed all veterans who were in the Reserve Force, who were not eligible for the Veterans Care Choice Program, to receive their benefits.
The Veterans Choice program has received significant criticism over the past few years, with some people arguing that it is a sham that was created to give more money to the military while taking money away from other programs that should be funded to help the Australian people.
Some argue that the Veterans choice program is a way to get rid of all of the welfare payments people receive, because they can’t afford to live on the welfare system and receive any benefits.
But this is a fallacy.
The main benefit the program provides is for veterans to be able to choose between returning to active duty and receiving their benefits, and the Veterans Affairs Minister is in no doubt that this benefit will be worth every cent.
“The Government will continue to provide Veterans Choice as a benefit to all Veterans and their families.
Veterans Choice is an important benefit to the Veterans Service and we will continue our work to ensure it continues to be the most effective benefit to Veterans and families,” Minister of Veterans Affairs David Johnston said in a statement on Tuesday.
“Veterans Choice will provide veterans with the opportunity to choose the best career for them, and to get the best possible return on their contribution to the Defence Forces.”
But veterans’ advocate Jim McClellan said that while Veterans Choice may be a way for the Government to get money to help people get off the welfare rolls, he was not convinced it is the best way to help those who are already in the military.
“If you look at the other benefits that are offered, they are more to do with giving benefits to people who have retired, or to give them access to jobs and housing, or things like that, than they are to give the money to people that are in the armed forces,” Mr McClellan said.
“Vets Choice is more of a cash transfer scheme.
It is a form of welfare for the military.”
Mr McClello said the government was spending money to give people money they may not be able afford, while the people who are currently in the service are getting their benefits through the Veterans’ Choice program.
“This is about money, not veterans,” he said.
“What the veterans are really asking for is better support for their children.”
Mr Johnston said the Veterans program was designed to provide more support for veterans, not a cash handout.
“In the last 12 months we have invested $7.6 billion in the Veterans Health Program, and that has given people access to housing, access to employment, access for training, access and job opportunities,” he told ABC Radio Melbourne.
“We have also invested $4.5 billion in Job Centres, and there is another $5 billion we have also put in to the Veteran’s Employment Service.”
Topics:government-and-politics,government-ands-and the-people,national-security,government,government_and-media,veterans,military,warwick-6230,alp,melbourne-3000,vic,australiaMore stories from Victoria