# 2014-041 - Compassionate Travel Assistance (CTA)

Compassionate Travel Assistance (CTA)

Case Summary

F&R Date: 2014–08–12

The grievor, a Reservist serving on uninterrupted periods of Class “C” service, was denied Compassionate Travel Assistance (CTA). The grievor was deemed ineligible to receive CTA based on the interpretation of the policy that only those Reservists entitled to a move at public expense and serving on their original period of service were eligible for the allowance. As redress, the grievor sought the reimbursement of the eligible travel expenses he incurred to attend the funeral of an immediate family member

The Initial Authority (IA) found that the interpretation of the policy was overly restrictive. As well, he found that there is a conflict between the Canadian Forces Military Personnel Instruction 20/04 and the Compensation and Benefit Instructions (CBI) 209.51 and that neither has the authority to override the other. Although supportive of the grievance, the IA determined that he did not have the authority to grant the redress sought and stated that he would request the Director General Compensation and Benefits to review the grievor's request.

The Committee had to determine whether the decision to deny the grievor's CTA claim was in accordance with applicable policies and regulations.

The Committee agreed with the IA on the narrow interpretation of the policy and noted from previous Final Authority decisions that the application of a benefit ought not to be so restrictive as to deviate from the intent of the policy.

The Committee could not imagine or accept that the Treasury Board intended to limit CTA only to those Reservists who were moved at public expense and have lost a loved one during their original period of service, but not to those members who have agreed to stay and serve for additional and uninterrupted periods of service. The Committee considered that such an interpretation would be contrary to the purpose of CTA.

The Committee noted that the Queen's Regulations and Orders for the Canadian Forces 9.08 and the CBI 209.51(3) did not limit or tie the qualifying Class “C” Reserve Service to the initial period of service or to the original position for which a move at public expense was granted. Therefore, in the context of this case and for the purpose of CTA, the Committee found that CBI 209.51 could be applied to multiple consecutive Statements of Understanding, as long as the Class “B” or Class “C” Reserve Service remains uninterrupted.

The Committee found that the grievor was entitled to CTA and recommended that the Chief of Defence Staff uphold the grievance.

CDS Decision Summary

CDS Decision Date: 2015–03–16

The CDS agreed with the Committee's findings and recommendation that the grievance be upheld.

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