British Journal of Canadian Studies

'A Great Stride Forward': The Post-Discharge Re-establishment Order (PC 7633) of 1 October 1941

British Journal of Canadian Studies (2010), 23, (2), 207–232.

Abstract

More than a million Canadians enlisted during the Second World War, and soon after September 1939 Ottawa was confronted with the first members of a new generation of veterans. A cabinet committee on demobilisation and rehabilitation was formed in December 1939 and, on 1 October 1941, 'The Post-Discharge Re-establishment Order' (PC 7633) was issued. This provided out-of-work and training benefits and extended the country's new unemployment insurance scheme to those who served. The principal architects of PC 7633, though veterans of the Great War, rejected the approach to demobilisation favoured by the Canadian Legion, which wanted those for whom work was not available kept in uniform, on the government payroll, until jobs could be found for them. PC 7633 gave the government the high ground in the evolving wartime debate over veterans' affairs and laid the foundation for the set of benefits known from 1945 as the Veterans Charter.

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Author details

Neary, Peter