Sample letter from Deputy Heads to their sub-delegated managers

Implementing the Veterans Hiring Act

The Veterans Hiring Act (VHA) amends the Public Service Employment Act (PSEA) to facilitate the transition of Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members and veterans into federal public service positions for which they are qualified.

The following changes became effective on July 1, 2015, when the VHA came into force.

  1. New statutory priority entitlement
    The amended PSEA provides for a new statutory priority entitlement for CAF members who are medically released for service-related reasons.

    The Public Service Commission (PSC) has amended the Public Service Employment Regulations to give effect to this priority entitlement. The amendments also include modifications to the regulatory priority entitlement that is granted to medically released CAF members who do not qualify for the statutory priority. Both the statutory and regulatory priority entitlements are for five years.
  2. Preference for appointment
    The PSEA has been amended to provide a preference for appointment in an advertised external process to modern-day veterans. A modern-day veteran is defined as any member who has served at least three years in the CAF, has been honourably released and is not indeterminately employed in the public service. Modern-day veterans who meet the essential qualifications have a preference for appointment in advertised external appointment processes for up to five years following their release.

    It is important to note that, at the coming into force of the Act, any eligible veterans who participated in a previously advertised external process from which appointments are still being made, as well as those applying to newly advertised processes, are eligible for the preference if they meet the essential merit criteria. The existing preference for veterans and survivors of veterans continues.

    The preference will also result in changes to the way in which appointments of former students are coded. Many organizations have been making these appointments using an advertised external appointment process, referred to as a “bridging mechanism” in the PSC’s Letter to Heads of Human Resources 08-21. Given that these appointments do not include an advertisement to which veterans can apply, the term or indeterminate appointment of a former participant of the Student Employment Programs are to be considered non-advertised. Rest assured that the PSC fully supports the renewal of the federal public service; this measure should be seen as administrative in nature only. To facilitate this, effective immediately, the PSC is waiving two of the Appointment Policy requirements for these appointments, as follows:
    • The appointment of a former student does not need to be included in the organizational criteria for non-advertised appointments; and
    • No rationale is required for the use of a non-advertised appointment for a former student.
  3. Mobility provision
    The amended PSEA allows serving CAF members and veterans to participate in internal advertised appointment processes for up to five years after their release. Eligible CAF members and veterans do not need to meet the area of selection requirements of any advertised internal appointment process, except for any employment equity criteria that may be established.

    The PSC has consolidated the Public Service Resourcing System and the Publiservice internal job board into a single point of access through jobs.gc.ca  to facilitate this provision. To ensure that eligible veterans and CAF members have access to federal public service job opportunities, all advertised internal term, indeterminate and acting appointments must be posted on jobs.gc.ca, in bilingual format. This requirement is effective immediately, regardless of the area of selection or the location of the position.

The PSC is currently conducting outreach to explain the impact of the VHA on staffing in the federal public service. The evolving guidance, presentations and other information are being posted on GCPedia, and discussion forums have been opened on the National Manager’s Community and on various Human Resources communities on GCConnex.

Please join me in ensuring that we do everything possible as an organization to implement the amended provisions of the PSEA and to ensure that CAF members and veterans are made welcome in the federal public service.

Name and title of Deputy Head

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