Thou­sands of vet­er­ans’ graves in dis­re­pair

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - CANADA -

An au­dit by Vet­er­ans Af­fairs has found tens of thou­sands of vet­er­ans’ graves in ceme­ter­ies across the coun­try are in a state of dis­re­pair. The cul­prit? A lack of fed­eral fund­ing. Vet­er­ans Af­fairs is re­spon­si­ble for main­tain­ing the graves of more than 200,000 vet­er­ans buried by the fed­eral gov­ern­ment in Canada.

But pre­vi­ous gov­ern­ments slashed the money avail­able for such main­te­nance from $5 mil­lion per year in 2003 to $1.2 mil­lion to­day, which the depart­ment’s au­dit says isn’t nearly enough.

There are cur­rently more than 45,000 graves in need of some type of re­pair, ac­cord­ing to the au­dit, which will take 17 years to com­pletely fix at cur­rent fund­ing lev­els.

Vet­er­ans Af­fairs of­fi­cials say they are look­ing at ways to be more ef­fi­cient with the fund­ing they do have, but don’t plan to ask the gov­ern­ment for more money un­til next year at the ear­li­est.

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