Archived Current News


04 May 2020 - Letter from Major General Paul Brereton to RSL National President and Australian SAS Association National Chairman regarding concerns they raised about the welfare of members who may be affected by the IG-ADF's Afghanistan Inquiry. Read the letter here.

01 April 2020 - Help Stop The ATO Appealing Veteran Invalidity Benefit Taxation Rulings

26 March 2020 - Advice to Military Superannuation Invalidity Benefit Recipients Updated 01 April 2020

11 September 2019 – Surviving Recent Friendly Fire. Kel Ryan makes some comments about recent social media attacks on the DVA, the ESORT and the ADSO. Read here.

8 August 2019 - DFWA PATRONAGE.  The Governor General, His Excellency General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Retd) has agreed to be the patron of the Association.  In addition, Her Excellency Mrs Linda Hurley has agreed to be Patron of the ACT Defence Widows Group.

2 August 2019 - MEDIA RELEASE. DVA - Need for a constructive dialogue, not ill-considered and inaccurate criticism. Available here.

2 May 2019 - OPEN LETTER TO THE PRIME MINISTER AND LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION.  Bert Hoebee, a regular contributor and active advocate for veterans' and ADF issues, has penned an open letter to our political leaders.  Read it here.  Also read his blog !

9 May 2019 - ALP Veterans Policy.  The DFWA welcomes the Labor Opposition’s commitment announced today of wide-ranging support to both the nation’s current serving ADF members and to those who once served, importantly, including their families. Read the DFWA Media Release.

19 March 2019 - NEW REPATRIATION COMMISSIONER  DFWA President Mr. Kel Ryan and all members of DFWA congratulate Mr. Don Spinks AM for his appointment as the Repatriation Commissioner. For the first time, a former Regimental Sergeant Major of the Army has been appointed as the new Repatriation Commissioner with outgoing Commissioner Major General Mark Kelly AO, DSC completing his appointment on 30 June this year.  A great honour for a man who has proved himself as a warrior and a soldier over many years. This is a timely appointment with the DVA and the Repatriation Commission going through a period of change that will impact on the Australian veteran community well into the future. The DVA media release providing further information can be found here:

31 January 2019:  AGED CARE INQUIRY TO HEAR WAR WIDOWS OVERCHARGED FOR NURSING HOME FEES.  The War Widows Guild says compensation payment pension should not be treated as assessable income !  Read the full article at:

28 June 2018 - HIGHER DFRDB SUPERANNUATION PENSION INCREASE.  DFWA advises that the latest DFRDB superannuation pension increase to take effect 5 July 2018, for those aged over 55, is 1.5%. This compares to the CPI rate of just 1.1% and which will be applied to other Government superannuation schemes such as PSS etc. This is a direct result of the campaign waged by DFWA over many years and which in 2014 saw the Government agree to applying the higher of CPI or wages growth to those DFRDB recipients aged over 55. The battle continues to extend this arrangement to ALL military superannuation schemes and without the age restriction.  See INDEXATION at CURRENT ISSUES at the left of this page.

28 March 2018 - ANAO AUDIT INTO DVA EFFICIENCY.  The ADSO submission into the audit is now available. ADSO views this submission as an opportunity to balance deserved criticism of DVA’s past service efficiencies and delivery performances, with comments on, support for and encouragement of initiatives to improve outright its performance into the future.

21 March 2018 - VETERANS TO GET NEW PAYMENT WHILE DVA ASSESSES CLAIMS.  DFWA welcomes the news that Veterans will soon have a new payment to help them cope with mental health issues while they’re waiting for the Department of Veterans’ Affairs to assess their claims.  On Thursday the Senate passed the veterans’ affairs reform bill after it secured the support of both the Coalition and Labor.  The new payment will be means-tested and will require veterans to take on training and counselling - including financial counselling for money management. The new payment will also be available to the family of veterans, including those who died by suicide within the last two years.

11 February 2018 - COMMENT RE SENATOR JIM MOLAN. The anger across the Australian Defence Community, and the public generally, at the Greens ‘coward’ slight aimed at now Senator Major General Jim Molan, AO, DSC (Retd) is palpable. The DFWA has issued a media statement here

3 February 2018 - GENERAL MONASH CAMPAIGN.  DFWA members may know of a strong push for General Sir John Monash's posthumous promotion to Field Marshal. Led by former Deputy Prime Minister Tim Fischer AC, the proposal is supported by many individuals across the military world as well as by other Australians who see an injustice because Monash did not receive adequate Australian recognition despite his many honours from Britain, France, Belgium and the United States.  The Saluting Monash Councilrecently asked for DFWA's endorsement of its proposal. While it is beyond DFWA's remit to have a corporate view on matters of this nature, many DFWA members may have a personal view.  You can see more at

18 January 2018 - ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY.  On Thursday 30 November 2017 the Government announced that it would establish a Royal Commission into alleged misconduct by the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry in Australia. The Government stated that the Inquiry ‘would consider the conduct of banks, insurers, financial services providers and superannuation funds'. When the Terms of Reference for the Commission were dually issued there was singularly only one major financial services entity in the Australia seemingly excluded from any scrutiny, namely the Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation (CSC). 

The Returned & Services League of Australia (RSL) and the Alliance of Defence Service Organisations (ADSO) calls on the Government by way of a Joint Media Statement to amend the Royal Commission’s Terms of Reference to include an examination of the military superannuation funds administered by the Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation.  (Note also that on 13 December 17 DFWA also issued a Media Release, available here.)

CSC administers military and other superannuation funds for over 700,000 people, including 230,000 serving and former servicemen and women. Given the magnitude of the CSC influence on the wellbeing of former servicemen and women the RSL and ADSO members consider this represents a compelling reason to include CSC within the Terms of Reference. The voices of 230,000 serving and former servicemen and women should be heard, not be silenced. Members who have experienced issues with CSC should be encouraged to provide feedback comments via email to either or ComSuper-Military Entitlements at

2 December 2017 - ADVOCACY IN A VORTEX.  Today, the number and purpose of the nation’s ex-service organisations (ESOs) is a vortex of confusion and questionable benefit to the broad Australian Defence Community (ADC).Contrast this position with the period after the major wars of the last century when it was the RSL, the TPI Federation and the War Widows Guild that advocated to government on behalf of the ADC. Advocacy was a singular issue during a time when many politicians and bureaucrats had military experience. Such is no longer the case.  Read the full article penned by DFWA National President here.

November 2017 - QUEENSLAND STATE ELECTION - Summary of Parties’ Positions on Issues Affecting Former and Current ADF Members and Their Families.

DFWA contacted the ALP, LNP, Greens, One Nation and Katter Parties and sought their position on veteran issues which fall under the remit of the State and  that had been raised through the Qld Veterans Advisory Council, or by DFWA,  other ESO and community groups. All parties responded except the Katter Party. Actual Party responses are here. The Summary Status Report (current as of 18 Nov 2017)  is here 

DFWA is apolitical and non-partisan and offers no recommendation regarding voting nor any indication on the value of the political party pledges and undertakings. Without going into a “how to suck eggs” discussion, it is suggested that views of Independents, candidates from other parties not included in the Summary, and of candidates from the above parties in your own electorate,  should be sought to help make your own decision. Questioning party workers and candidates can only increase the influence of the Defence Community now and in future State and Federal elections.

DFWA (Qld) is grateful that the political parties now recognise the value of former and serving ADF members and their families sufficient to respond to the DFWA request. In the past there has been no interest in veteran family issues at State elections.

5 November 2017: PROPOSED EX-ADF COMMUNITY SUPPORT SERVICES HUB.  DFWA strongly supports the proposal to establish the Ex-ADF Community Support Services Hub in Townsville, known in the ESO community as 'The Oasis Townsville'. The proposal originated from the collaboration of all ESOs in Townsivlle. These ESOs  have been working with Townsville City Council, Queensland State Government and the local business community to centralise the referral for services of the various ESOs into a single facility. This Oasis gives ex-ADF members and their families one place to go to find answers and identify disparate and specialised services provided by ESOs that are spread throughout Townsiville. The ESO assessment of the need has been reinforced strongly by the findings of the Federal Minister for Health trial being conducted in Townsville to support the prevention of suicide in the ex-ADF community. Townsville is one of 12 National Suicide Prevention Trial sites around Australia, and the only one dealing with the ex-ADF community. The Townsville project is known as Operation Compass. The Oasis Townsville is the single biggest issue for the ex-ADF community in Townsville and has had the effect of banding ESOs, the Townsville community and veterans of all generations together very strongly to find a solution to simplifying effective access to services for ex-ADF members and their families.  Read more about the proposal here.

17 October 2017 - HANSARD – QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE – VETERANS  In the House of Representatives Questions without Notice, Independent Senator Andrew Wilkie (TAS) asked the Prime Minister this question:  Mr WILKIE (Denison) (14:18): "My question is to the Prime Minister. Prime Minister, the TPI Federation has written to you repeatedly, seeking a resolution to the dreadful situation where about 28,000 totally and permanently incapacitated veterans have seen their economic loss compensation fall to just 65 per cent of the minimum wage. Prime Minister, given the gravity of this issue, and the Parliamentary Budget Office's validation of the independent analysis supporting the claim by the TPI Federation, will you now take personal responsibility and intervene to facilitate an immediate increase of $176 a week in the economic loss compensation payments to Australia's TPI veterans?" Read the PM's reply here Hansard Reference - page 24:

12 September 2017: ABC RADIO INTERVIEW - PTS FORUM.  Those unlucky enough not to live in Queenslanders may not know but Steve Austin is an ABC Radio 612 4QR Brisbane breakfast broadcaster who is a respected and noted questioner and searching interviewer of his guests. His broadcast on Friday 8 September 2017 from the PTS Forum in Brisbane was of particular interest. He evidently researched the subject exceptionally well and asked searching questions that exposed the facts of PTS on everyone. If you have time, the broadcast is worth a listen here:

24 August 2017: ESO LEADER QUESTIONS VITRIOLIC NATURE OF RECENT SOCIAL MEDIA POSTS.  The Chair and National President of the RAR Corporation, Michael von Berg MC OAM has made an impassioned plea to cease recent social media comment directed at DVA employees.  The DFWA fully supports his views. Read his comments here.

13 August 2017: DFWA’s LEADERSHIP BATON TO CHANGE HANDS.  The Defence Force Welfare Association (DFWA) wishes to announce with sad regret that, after more than 10 years of distinguished and success-laden service as its National President, Colonel David Jamison AM (Retd) has elected to step down from his leadership position with effect Monday 14 August 2017. David can be rightfully proud of his tenure.  A media release is available in our Media area, and a statement from the Minister read to the Senare is here.