From the time Veterans Affairs Canada was established in 1944, the veterans benefit legislation and the resulting Veterans Affairs administrative practices have guaranteed exactly the same rights to all veterans, native and non-native alike.
Under the post-war demobilization program, veterans could choose one of the following options: a re-establishment credit (which was equal to the war services gratuity), educational assistance (vocational or university training), or assistance under the Veterans’ Land Act (VLA).
Approximately 60% of first nations veterans chose VLA compared with 10% for non-first nations veterans, and DVA paid $2,320 to Indian Affairs for each of these veterans. By comparison, approximately 70% of all veterans chose to take the re-establishment credit (which averaged $450).
A file review was conducted to determine whether Métis veterans received their full entitlement to these benefits. Preliminary results indicate that 78% of Métis veterans received the re-establishment credit, 15% chose assistance under the VLA, and 3% chose educational assistance.
The Government of Canada recognizes that the National Métis Veterans Association (NMVA) and other organizations representing Métis veterans are dissatisfied that they have not received the same offer as first nation veterans.
However, Veterans Affairs Canada has extended an offer to the NMVA to further review the findings of the file review conducted by the department.