VTN in the News

2023

Afghans in Pakistan waiting for resettlement in Canada have been detained and deported

November 10, 2023 – Janice Dickson, The Globe and Mail
Tim Laidler, the Afghan support director for the Veterans Transition Network, criticized the process and said that when those Afghans arrive in Canada they will need mental health support.

Retired corporal talks about helping fellow veterans transition to post-military life

November 10, 2023 – Michelle Eliot, CBC News
Cpl. Tim Laidler speaks with Michelle Eliot about the Veteran Transition Network, which helps veterans transition from the military to civilian life.

Families serve too, says B.C.-based charity on Military Family Appreciation Day

September 15, 2022 – Moira Wyton, CBC News
Oliver Thorne, CEO of VTN, says while much support is rightly focused on active service members, “the family serves, too.” “It’s incredibly important that those supports are there so that family, that spouse, that partner can be well supported and in-turn provide the best support to the service member as well.”

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Two years after Taliban takeover, many Afghans who helped Canada’s military remain in limbo

August 15, 2023 – Janice Dickson, The Globe and Mail
When it comes to the Afghans still languishing in Pakistan, VTN’s Tim Laider said, Canada should be paying attention to the mental-health toll that a two-year-long transition can take on a family.

The Taliban seized Kabul 2 years ago. Those who escaped still struggle

August 15, 2023 – Shogofa Danish & David Baxter, Global News
Tim Laidler, an Afghanistan war veteran who advocates for Afghans who helped the Canadian Forces during the war, says he fears they are being forgotten amid the efforts to help Ukraine.

B.C. Rotary club, veterans program to provide mental health support in Ukraine

June 26, 2023 – Bhinder Sajan, CTV News
The White Rock Rotary Club and the Veterans Transition Program at UBC are teaming up to provide mental health supports to Ukrainians. Today they signed a memorandum of understanding to launch the “Ukraine Trauma Support Initiative.”

Canada should fly vulnerable Afghans directly here, do checks after: advocate

January 22, 2023 – Rachel Gilmore, Global News
Afghans who are facing immediate, high risks from the Taliban should be brought straight into Canada now, said Tim Laidler of the Veterans Transition Network.

2022

Many military veterans struggle in silence

November 10, 2022 – Phil Carpenter, Global News
On Remembrance Day, military veterans who fought for Canada often don’t talk easily about the struggles they have experienced.

As veterans struggle with loneliness, advocates push for more social-building programs

November 9, 2022 – Dave McGinn, The Globe and Mail
The 2021 census found that nearly one-quarter of veterans live alone, a much higher rate than the overall population. With that information in hand, advocacy organizations are empowered to speak out for more supports and programs to address loneliness among veterans.

Veterans Affairs assisted dying discussion a ‘serious wake-up call,’ advocates tell MPs

October 24, 2022 – Sean Boyton, Global News
The case of a Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) employee discussing medical assistance in dying (MAiD) with a veteran should serve as “a serious wake-up call” to the gaps former military members face in accessing proper care.

‘Wild West’: Audit on veterans’ medical cannabis sparks calls for oversight, research

September 15, 2022 – Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press
Mental-health providers and others are reacting with shock and concern after an internal government audit uncovered significant problems with Ottawa’s administration of hundreds of millions of dollars in medical marijuana for veterans.

A year into Taliban rule, Afghans fear Canada has left them behind

August 12, 2022 – Stewart Bell, Global News
Since the Taliban seized power on Aug. 15, 2021 amid a U.S. military withdrawal, about 17,000 Afghans have arrived in Canada through a resettlement program. But thousands whose work for Canada has put them at risk remain stuck in cities like Kabul, while others are in limbo in neighbouring countries like Pakistan.

support-afghan-interpreters

On the run and hiding in a hole: Thousands of Afghans who helped Canada still facing Taliban vengeance

August 11, 2022 – Tom Blackwell, National Post
VTN’s Oliver Thorne: “We shouldn’t be having a one-year anniversary… It is disheartening that we are still facing a lot of the same problems we were a year ago…. To be left waiting for an answer for months and months is not good enough.”

Census figures paint statistical portrait of Canadian military members, veterans

July 13, 2022 – Jim Bronskill, CTV News
Statistics Canada has worked in recent years with federal agencies and others to paint a fuller picture of veterans, looking at their overall health and well-being.

Ottawa’s anti-terrorism laws hinder efforts to evacuate Afghans loyal to Canada out of Afghanistan

June 15, 2022 – Janice Dickson, The Globe and Mail
Humanitarian and veterans’ groups trying to evacuate people who worked for Canada’s military and diplomatic mission in Afghanistan face major hurdles because Ottawa is strictly enforcing anti-terrorism law.

Canadian veterans waiting too long for disability benefits, Auditor-General finds

May 31, 2022 – Michelle Carbert, The Globe and Mail
The Auditor-General says Canadian veterans are waiting too long to receive compensation for injuries sustained during their service, despite Veterans Affairs’ efforts to improve wait times for disability benefits applications.

Lack of support for Afghan refugees frustrating Canadian veterans

April 27, 2022 – Jeff Semple, Global News
Canadian veterans say Ottawa is lagging behind on its promise to help tens of thousands of people trying to escape Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. Jeff Semple looks at what vets are pushing Ottawa to do, and how the crisis is weighing heavily on their mental health.

2021

Inside the veteran push for funding to help stranded Afghans

October 14, 2021 – Mercedes Stephenson, Global News
‘The West Block’ host Mercedes Stephenson speaks with Tim Laidler, board president of the Veterans’ Transition Network, about the ‘crisis’ in Afghan safe houses.

At an Islamabad hotel, Afghans who worked for Canada’s military await a new life

October 14, 2021 – Stewart Bell and Jeff Semple, Global News
Two days before he was scheduled to board a plane for Toronto, Mohammad Ismail stood in a cramped hotel room in Islamabad, packing his belongings into a small black suitcase.

Canada needs to step up its efforts to get interpreters and families out of Afghanistan

August 28, 2021 – Gordon Hoekstra, Vancouver Sun
When former Canadian soldier Tim Laidler started getting calls from former Afghanistan interpreters threatened by the Taliban, he knew he had to do something.

As the Taliban retakes Afghanistan, Canadian military veterans look on with frustration and sorrow

August 13, 2021 – Greg Mercer & Eric Andrew-Gee, The Globe and Mail
Twenty years after Canada first sent troops into Afghanistan, military veterans are watching the Taliban retake the country they fought to free and are asking one question: Was it worth it?

Canadian Veterans marching

It’s our turn to help Afghan interpreters and workers who risked all for us

August 11, 2021 – Licia Corbella, Calgary Herald
As the Taliban gains strength in Afghanistan, many Canadians who have worked with brave men and women in that troubled country are doing everything they can to help bring these endangered interpreters to Canada.

Canadian Veterans marching

Afghanistan puts up roadblocks for interpreters trying to flee to Canada

August 10, 2021 – Evan Dyer, CBC
The embattled Afghanistan government has put up numerous roadblocks, including denying exit visas, to hamper the departure of interpreters who aided Canada’s military mission.

Canadian Veterans marching

Veterans face increasing wait times for mental-health support at government clinics

January 22, 2021 – Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press, CTV News
Internal reports prepared by Veterans Affairs Canada show Canadian veterans have been waiting longer and longer in recent years to access psychiatric services and other medical support at government-run clinics.

2020

Canadian Veterans marching

Veterans face barriers to mental, physical health care during pandemic

November 11, 2020 – Kier Junos, CityNews
As Canadians mark Remembrance Day amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, veteran mental health services are reporting an increase in demand.

Canadian Veterans marching

‘Tenacity and ingenuity’: Veterans are overcoming the dangers of pandemic isolation

November 11, 2020 – Ryan Flanagan, CTV News
The COVID-19 pandemic is making it more difficult for Canada’s veterans to get the help they need, but some veterans are finding ways past those barriers.

Canadian Veterans marching

Calgary veteran cycles to military monuments to raise awareness about effects of PTSD

November 10, 2020 – Carolyn Kury de Castillo, Global News
A Calgary veteran plans to ride his bike to military monuments in the city to highlight the sacrifices of soldiers.

Canadian Veterans marching

Disabled veterans struggle with COVID-19 as Canada prepares to mark Remembrance Day

November 09, 2020 – Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press, National Post
Canadians from coast to coast to coast will mark Remembrance Day on Wednesday, once again taking a moment to honour and remember those who offered up their lives.

Canadian Veterans marching

Veterans network launches new program to aid vets during pandemic

August 20, 2020 – James Snell, Winnipeg Sun
VTN officially launched its national transition skills course, a five-day confidential program that aims to build fortitude and resiliency in veterans during the public health crisis. The course addresses trauma, peer support, communication skills and goal setting.

Canadian Veterans marching

Veterans Transition Network launches COVID-19 program

August 20, 2020 – Delta Optimist
The Veterans Transition Network (VTN) has mobilized its network across Canada to help veterans and soldiers struggling with mental health during COVID-19.

 

2019

Canadian Veterans marching

UBC to become a more veteran-friendly campus by 2020

VANCOUVER, September 9, 2019, UBC News
UBC is announcing its commitment to become Canada’s first veteran-friendly campus by 2020 to further its support for the health and well-being of all current and future veterans on campus.

Canadian Veterans marching

Lest we Forget: A brief look at veterans and caregiving

Spring 2019, Caregiver Solutions Magazine
Unlike in other caregiving situations, care­givers of veterans often have to deal with and help to manage physical, physiologi­cal and mental health conditions…

Veterans Affairs at UBC

Quebec Veterans Foundation contributes $45,000 to serve Veterans struggling with transition

Montreal, March 07, 2019
25% of Veterans in Quebec experience difficulties in their transition to civilian life.

Veterans Affairs at UBC

Veterans Transition Program to provide transition support and counselling for Saskatchewan Veterans

February 06, 2019
The Veterans Transition Network is set to deliver its’ life-changing Veterans Transition Program to local Saskatchewan Veterans.

Veterans Affairs at UBC

Invisible injury | Legion Magazine

January 30, 2019
If a soldier’s moral conscience is damaged, the problem and the solution can both be hard to find.

Veterans Affairs at UBC

Minister Wilson-Raybould announces partnership with UBC’s Centre for Group Counselling and Trauma

January 23, 2019
Veterans Affairs Canada provides $250,000 to UBC’s Veterans Transition Training Centre through the Veteran and Family Well-Being Fund.

St. John's Newfoundland Harbour

How is Canada Taking Care of It’s Veterans?

January 17, 2019
For some… transitioning to civilian life is a very real struggle. To help, the Veterans Transition Network (VTN) offers programs facilitated by caring and compassionate experts who are specifically trained to help veterans transition back into civilian life.

Veterans Affairs at UBC

Boeing Ottawa Gives $40,000 USD to support Veterans

January 03, 2019
Boeing, a leader in the Canadian aerospace industry, is enabling veterans with a chance to heal and return to meaningful civilian lives.

2018

St. John's Newfoundland Harbour

The Veterans Transition Network Is Coming to the Rock

December 12, 2018
The Veterans Transition Network (VTN) is making its way to Newfoundland for the first time in March, bringing valuable support to help Veterans transition from the military to productive and meaningful civilian lives.

Boeing Global Impact chart

Boeing Announces Nearly a Quarter-Billion Dollars in Corporate Giving in 2018

November 19, 2018
Thanks to Boeing’s ongoing support, Veterans Transition Program Psychologists and Counsellors across Canada have been equipped with skills to assist Canadian Veterans through transition.

veterans transition program underway

Transition Program Helps Younger Veterans Shed The Trauma Of Combat

November 11, 2018
They’re able to let go of some of the burdens and better reintegrate into civilian life.

UBC opera silent night

UBC Opera partners with the Veteran’s Transition Network for Silent Night

November 5, 2018
Silent Night, based on the screenplay by Christian Carion, is an opera being put on this month at UBC.

Angela Ayre in front of poppy image

While Remembrance Day is about honour, it can trigger tough emotions for some veterans

October 31, 2018
PTSD and other medical problems are on the rise for veterans and serving military personnel in Canada, and new programs are available to help them.

james cawley veteran open roll podcast

Open Roll Podcast 145 – Veterans Transition Network – with James Cawley

May 3, 2018
James Cawley joins Open Roll Podcast to talk about the Veterans Transition Network. The Veterans Transition Network (VTN) is a Canadian operation providing mental health services specifically for Veterans.

veterans transition program mike dadson

The Veterans Transition Network Arrives In The Wheat Province

April 23, 2018
The Veterans Transition Program is making its way to Saskatchewan for the first time on May 11th, bringing valuable programs to help Veterans transition from the military to a productive and meaningful civilian life.

kate gillie search and rescue painting

Courage, Humility and Survival: one SAR Captain’s painting

April 2, 2018
There is something not quite normal about pilots. Retired Captain David Barkes is one of these exceptional humans. This painting that I did for him is based on a photo taken of the event where he landed his Labrador on a scraggy crumbling rock in the middle of iceberg ally off the Newfoundland coast.

shaw logo

Advertising for a good cause: Shaw’s donation enables veterans

March 27, 2018
Talk about a national contribution: a kind donation of cable and satellite air time from Shaw Communications is allowing many returned veterans a second chance at life.

veterans transition network founders

Program brings veterans together to deal and heal operational stress injuries

March 16, 2018
The Veterans Transition Network is changing things up for veterans and RCMP when it comes to counselling for operational stress injuries. The 10-day treatment program brings veterans together with others experiencing the same trauma in a group setting.