Earlier this year, several changes approved by the Treasury Board were made to multiple Compensation and Benefits Instruction (CBI) chapters.
Specifically, Chapters 204, 205, 210 and 211 saw some alterations, as stated in recent CANFORGENs.
As a result of these changes, on March 30, 2021, a new medical specialist occupation was incorporated into the pay structure for medical officers. Emergency medicine specialty was added to the list of medical specialties in the regular force.
COVID-19 Related Changes
The CANFORGEN also notes that at the beginning of October 2020, an expansion was made regarding the eligibility and application of the COVID-19 related exceptional hazard allowance to allow for financial compensation. This expansion affects members deployed on Op LASER, Op VECTOR or Op GLOBE, up to and including September 30, 2021, and are performing assigned duties where a high risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists.
Various Program Amendments
Effective August 1, 2021, members enrolled in the Vocational Rehabilitation Program for Serving Members (VRPSM) will be excluded from getting environmental allowances, and amendments will be made to the recruitment allowance to account for the new Medical Specialist Occupation (00390).
This past May, amendments were also made to the Maternity and Parental Allowance. These changes align with changes made to the Employment Insurance Act and the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan, including extended benefits and equal coverage for members residing in Quebec.
In addition, the creation of a new CBI 210.95 was approved to allow for the reimbursement of individual professional fees when certification or licensure is required by statute, by law, or when required by the Canadian Forces for members to perform their duties.
The CANFORGEN also noted that from April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2022, to be eligible for the Education Reimbursement Primary Reserve Benefit found at CBI 21.801, a waiver of the requirement for primary reserve members to complete basic military qualification or basic military officer qualification is needed.
To remove geographic restrictions and reference to catastrophic injuries and base requirements on the medical needs of the ill and injured member, there will be an amendment to service benefits for ill and injured Canadian Forces members in CBI 21.801. According to the CANFORGEN, these amendments will also align Canadian Forces benefits with those provided by Veterans Affairs Canada to ensure a smooth transition for ill and injured members upon their release.
The updated policies and additional information will be posted to the CBI intranet and internet pages.