OTTAWA– The Conservative government continues to ignore our veterans while wasting millions on advertising and propaganda campaigns, said Liberal Veterans Affairs critic Sean Casey today.
“The fact that this government has squandered more than $7 million advertising the War of 1812 while refusing to cover veterans’ funeral costs is simply deplorable,” said Mr. Casey. “Once again the Conservatives prove that they value symbolism over substance and their own image over the needs of the men and women who have served their country so valiantly.”
Figures obtained by Liberal MPs show that, to date, the government has spent more than $7.2 million on advertising to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812. In contrast, the Conservatives have rejected 66 percent of all applications to the Last Post Fund (LPF), a program that helps veterans cover their funeral costs. The LPF requires only an additional $5 million annually to cover current veterans’ funeral needs, including opening up the fund to Canadians who served after the Korean War.
“Over the past several years, the Harper Conservatives have spent huge amounts on taxpayer-funded advertising, including the all-time annual record of $136.3 million in 2009-10, yet when it comes to looking after our veterans, they deny them much-needed programs and services,” said Mr. Casey. “It is time that this government stops abusing public money in pursuit of propaganda and self-promotion, and devotes these resources to help veterans and their families.”