Chat with Pat—Spring 2018
Pat Povey is a familiar face—or voice—to many veterans and their whānau. VA News sat down with Pat in our new regular series 'Chat with Pat'.
VA News: Thanks for sitting down with us again Pat. We had some great feedback since our last edition of VA News.
Pat: Thanks! It's been great to be able to connect with our veterans and their whānau in another way. We've had calls and messages from a number of veterans that I've not spoken to for many years—it's been really nice.
VA News: What's been happening since we last sat down?
Pat: As a lot of our readers will know, we've been trying to get out and about to meet as many veterans as we can—especially in their own communities. With the Invictus Games coming up in Sydney, we have taken the opportunity to run some veteran clinics in the region. We've sent out invites to all veterans who we know are living in the area, but if anyone hasn't received one we'd really like to hear from them.
VA News: That sounds fantastic Pat. I've also heard we've recently introduced some improvements to the Veterans' Independence Programme. Can you expand on this?
Pat: Absolutely. I'm really pleased to say we're now able to offer additional services under our agreement with Chemwash. In addition to house washing, gutter clearing, and external window cleaning, we can now also fund the washing of pathways and driveways, and gutter clearing on stand alone garages. There are a few parameters around this, but it's a great improvement.
VA News: How can veterans go about accessing these new services?
Pat: Veterans already getting services from Chemwash will be contacted before their service is scheduled. They don't need to do anything else until then. If you're not getting these services yet, then get in touch with us.
VA News: Sounds nice and easy. Have you anything else you’d like to talk about?
Pat: I've heard a little bit of confusion about eligibility for the Veteran's Pension. If you served, have qualifying operational service, and meet the criteria for NZ Superannuation you're able to get the Veteran's Pension. It's paid by the Ministry of Social Development instead of NZ Superannuation, and comes with a few additional benefits. There's really no downside to it.
VA News: And what about spouses and partners?
Pat: Good question. Spouses and partners can get a Veteran’s Pension if their veteran partner is getting either a War Disablement Pension of at least 70% or has a whole-person impairment of 52% or more. If a veteran or their spouse or partner isn’t sure about anything, they can get in touch with us to check.
VA News: Any final thoughts for our readers?
Pat: As always, we’re here if you have any questions or concerns. Whether it's help with filling out a form or ideas on how we can better support you, please do not hesitate to get in touch.