Dartmouth-based Veterans Emergency Transition Services (VETS) Canada has been awarded a three-year contract to provide 24-hour emergency counselling to homeless veterans and veterans in crisis across Canada.
The contract was awarded Friday and requires VETS Canada to provide immediate telephone, online, and in-person assistance.
The coverage includes the dispatch of individuals or teams made up of ex-military or former RCMP personnel throughout Canada.
According to the contract award:
"The objective is to provide 'one on one' interaction with homeless or in-crisis veterans by providing assistance in securing shelter, referral or escort to medical or substance treatment programs, peer support, coaching, or other related support as required."
"I know VETS Canada and the unbelievable work they do. They will make every dollar work on the ground," said NDP veterans affairs critic Peter Stoffer.
"It is unfortunate the government has to rely on other organizations to provide these types of services."
Veterans Affairs Canada stated VETS Canada is the "only known organization uniquely qualified to meet the requirements of the services requested."
In 2012, members of VETS Canada were making a presentation in Halifax to a Veterans Affairs committee when Conservative MP Rob Anders infamously fell asleep.
When chastised, Anders lashed out, calling one presenter an NDP "hack." The object of Anders' tirade was actually a card carrying member of the Conservative Party, as was the other VETS Canada presenter.