Mr. Speaker, in his report made public today, the Canadian Forces ombudsman chastises the Department of National Defence for breaking promises to Canadian soldiers.
Ten corporals who volunteered to be away from their families for four months in order to learn how to operate a new Canadian Forces air traffic control system were ordered to repay 65% of their per diem. Not only has this forced some of these soldiers to take out loans to repay this money, it has negatively affected the morale of the Canadian Forces and has discouraged other soldiers from volunteering to take this course.
The NDP finds it very ironic that the government has been so slow to reclaim the millions of dollars it disbursed to Liberal-friendly ad agencies while being so quick and so harsh in its attempts to reclaim meal allowances from 10 Canadian Forces corporals.
I call on the Minister of National Defence to reverse the clawback rather than visit any more hardship on the families of these NCOs who are willing to acquire a needed skill in the Canadian armed forces.