Vets Need Help

Bill Sutherland, The StarPhoenix

Re: Afghanistan: Coming home series. Thank you for drawing attention to the impact that the longest combat mission in Canadian history is having on our veterans.

One of their biggest challenges in returning home is to make the transition to the civilian workforce, as the article Afghan vets take aim at job market (SP, Feb. 28), describes. The current 9-11 generation of veterans is facing not only tough economic times but a corporate culture that can be unfamiliar, and where military skills and experience aren't fully understood.

Helping Canadian Forces veterans overcome those hurdles and find meaningful employment is the mandate of the Commissionaires. It's been at the heart of what we do since we started 87 years ago.

A non-profit organization, we are also the largest private employer of veterans and have hired thousands of vets over that time.

In recent years, 5,000 members of the forces have been released annually, and Commissionaires has hired more than 1,000 in each of those years. Most vets have neither a government pension nor are eligible for Veterans Affairs programs.

We owe it to our veterans to serve them as they have served us.

Bill Sutherland Chair, National Board of Governors, Commissionaires