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Virgin Australia Priority For Boarding

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Virgin Australia Priority For Boarding

Old 4th Nov 2018, 01:18
  #1 (permalink)  
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Virgin Australia Priority For Boarding

As a Physically Disabled (Totally and Permanently Incapacitated – TPI) ex-Vietnam Veteran in my 70’s, I find Virgin’s offer to veterans to have priority boarding and an announcement onboard as an insult to the veteran community.

I normally board first in anycase as I’m disabled. Does this mean I’ll board in front of other disabled persons? It’s all a joke and publicity stunt to attract customers. Most veterans I know would prefer to keep their anonymity while boarding and as for an announcement on board that just adds to further embarrassment.

Maybe a discount (e.g. ID travel) would provide greater recognition for their service to Australia where veterans 'lay their lives on the line', instead of priority boarding and an announcement.

Maybe Qantas could look at my suggestion in acknowledging the operational service with some form of discount seeing the Minister for Veterans Affairs announced the initiative to have a ‘Veterans Card’ whereby companies could offer discounts to veterans?
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 01:29
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I’m a veteran (albeit a young one and with no DVA benefits) and whilst I greatly respect all that have gone before me, I really hope we don’t go down the American path of companies feeling obliged to thank everyone for their service. I’m proud of my time in uniform, but I volunteered for it. It doesn’t need to be rammed down everybodies throat, I don’t want or need any special privelages.
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 01:57
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Sorry, Gents, I have to disagree.

I think the community as a whole should be more appreciative of their current and ex defence members.

I say this as an ex defence member myself.

With a wife in the allied health industry, it has angered me in times past when I have heard about the treatment of veterans by the Dept of Vet Affairs. You would swear that the shiny bum bureaucrats were personally funding the treatment that these ex members (who had suffered mental or physical damage on our behalf) were seeking. The veterans (or their spouses) had to really fight the clerks to have their course of treatment approved. This was not exceptional. It was usual.

If this is a step to recognise the contribution of these people to our nation, regularly and routinely - not just on ANZAC day, then I am for it. Yes it is a bit cheesy, but it is moving in the right direction.

Give the Vets it all: cheap fares, higher tax free threshold, reduced car rego, etc.

For the most part, I enjoyed my military time. While I got away from my time in the military unscathed, I went to 13 funerals of friends and colleagues - in peacetime! Not to mention the sacrifices of the families involved.

I know that friends who have not had exposure to the military life cannot believe some of the stories my wife has told them about her life as a military spouse. The public as whole has no idea.

Thank you for your service and sacrifice. Lest we forget.
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 01:06
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Veteran?

So what is the accepted definition of a "veteran"?
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 01:12
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The Department of Veterans' Affairs official definition of a veteran is a member of the defence forces who has seen 'operational service'
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 02:09
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Give the Vets it all: cheap fares, higher tax free threshold, reduced car rego, etc.
Vs
I volunteered for it
It's a fine line. Plenty of people do dangerous jobs.
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 02:40
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Anything to stop university students saying delete all reference to WW1 and 2, or the word 'remembrance' and 'the fallen' and stating, in public, that they would be 'moved to physically rip off a person's poppy'. I see the OP's point of view but by drawing attention to veterans we can hopefully push these worldly wise, know-it-all eighteen year olds right back in their boxes, where they belong.
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 04:11
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In Australia it seems your damned if you and damned if you don't reading some comments. Virgin is trying.

I'm 100% TPI an I have nothing but good to say about my dealings with DVA....
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 04:54
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Having seen how service people and ex service people are treated in the USA and having experienced how we are treated in Australia, I have to say there is an enormous gap that could be narrowed, by a lot!
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 05:07
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Before I start, let me state that I've had numerous family members fight and become injured in wars over time.

It's a stupid idea. It smacks of American style nationalistic rubbish that we Australians reject. We do the job, and get on with our lives. We reject these overt symbols of nationalism. We are egalitarian. Most ex military I know are humble and don't want to be singled out with priority boarding or announcements so politicians and business people can feel good about themselves while tangible problems in society are ignored.

I've heard numerous ADF and ex-ADF state specifically they find it stupid and they don't want any part of it. I've never met a single ex-military member who wanted to be "thanked for their service". They did the job they volunteered for, and got on with their lives.

If we're going to do it for military veterans, who as been stated is any ADF member who has seen operational service, why not do it for police officers, firefighters, paramedics etc who put their lives on the line to rescue people in need? Why not anyone who has been awarded an Australian bravery decoration? Why not doctors or nurses or teachers or social workers or any profession that is essential for the survival of our great nation? Fishermen, forestry workers and farmers all have a high risk of death on the job and perform vital services for the community. Why not civilian pilots? There have been plenty of civilian professional pilots who have lost their lives in Australia in recent times, do they deserve thanks for providing essential services like air ambulances, outback transportation and disaster relief?

It does smack of virtue signalling and favouritism.

For a more eloquent rebuttal to this proposal written by a former Australian Army officer:

As a veteran, I don't want your thanks. There are plenty who deserve it more

Anything to stop university students saying delete all reference to WW1 and 2, or the word 'remembrance' and 'the fallen' and stating, in public, that they would be 'moved to physically rip off a person's poppy'. I see the OP's point of view but by drawing attention to veterans we can hopefully push these worldly wise, know-it-all eighteen year olds right back in their boxes, where they belong.
And where do they exist outside of your own imagination, or a miniscule fringe element on some dark corner of the internet? Most veterans I know wouldn't want to be singled out to be used as political pawns.

Last edited by dr dre; 4th Nov 2018 at 05:27.
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 07:31
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Does that mean, essentially, that you don’t respect veterans?
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 07:44
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As an ex RAEME Aviation soldier, I tend to agree with the OP.
I have been thanked for service a couple of times in hospital when my service record came up.
My answer to them was that I never fired a shot in anger, was told doesn't matter the fact that had volunteered was enough reason.

FWIW.
Cheers
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 08:09
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Originally Posted by ernestkgann View Post
Does that mean, essentially, that you don’t respect veterans?
So because I disagree with this proposal I don't "respect veterans"?

No, I think it's American style jingoistic nonsense and does nothing to help actual people with needs (which includes veterans) and disrespects all those other professionals in society who perform dangerous and essential jobs without as many thanks.

In fact if we quietly acknowledge all people in society who perform these jobs (which includes people in the military) without meaningless platitudes I believe it's much more respectful to veterans than being used as a corporate and governmental PR stunt.

A lot of former military personnel are opposed to this as well, if the comments on this thread and social media are anything to go by. Do they "disrespect veterans"?
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 08:17
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It’s all a joke and publicity stunt to attract customers.
Of course it’s just a publicity stunt.

Maybe a discount (e.g. ID travel) would provide greater recognition for their service to Australia where veterans 'lay their lives on the line', instead of priority boarding and an announcement.
Won’t happen! That would cost money!
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 08:20
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My Grandfather fought on the western front in WW1. He didn't speak about it at all during his life and never wanted it recognised. I think we should recognise veterans but having had a lot to do with the US over the last 30 years the question is do we want to go down their path? It all comes to the culture you want to drive as the PM ( although Australian politicians and the culture they drive is another discussion)
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 08:28
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This sums up my thoughts on this matter entirely:

A spokesman for Qantas said the airline had the “utmost respect for current and former defence force personnel” and special announcements were made on Anzac Day and Remembrance Day.

“[But] we’re conscious that we carry a lot of exceptional people every day, including veterans, police, paramedics, nurses, firefighters and others, and so we find it difficult to single out a particular group as part of the boarding process [with the exception of passengers with special needs].”
Virgin Australia announces US-style plan to honour veterans on every flight
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 08:37
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Iím an ADF member.

I think itís hilarious that Virgin (and Scomo for that matter) think this is a priority when mental health support for veterans suffering from PTSD remains under funded, DVA argues the point to the literal cent with people with permanent injuries received in combat and at home through bad WH&S practices and more diggers are killing themselves every year than what we ever lost in Afghanistan.

While Iím sure Virgin means well, I donít know anyone either past or present ADF thatís asked for it, or would want this over the government actually looking after the people theyíve assisted in breaking.

No one wants discounts, we donít want your thanks (although Iím sure itís appreicated), what everyone wants is for those who are suffering to be looked after and helped, even if it costs the government some money.
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 08:50
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As a brother of an ex Defence Force member (Commando Medic), a father of a Paramedic and other family members as Doctors, Nurses and Police officers aka First Responders I truly believe that they all should be offered priority boarding after all disabled passengers. The real issue is that the typical Australian likes to lay low and not shine in their heroism that the majority willingly see them as. It’s a must in my opinion. I see this as a wonderful gesture and nothing to do with what our Governments should or are doing.
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 09:17
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While I think defence force members deserve more recognition than they get in Australia, just thinking how the bogans on the LCCs would react to someone jumping the queue. Perhaps the vets don’t need that experience.
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Old 4th Nov 2018, 09:33
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Observed it in the States, and I think it is a great gesture that draws attention to a group, not simply the individual taking the offer.

And is up to the Veteran if he/she wishes to take the offer of boarding first, the privilege being there if it is wanted. Goes to convey a deep appreciation for the sacrifices given historically by a certain group of our society.

As Break Right said....wonderful...

As to QF response...I was a First Responder for some time...never ever thought myself in the same league as a Veteran, and most First Responders I interacted with would have had the same feelings.

Good on Virgin!!!
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