February 21, 2018
War stories sought for legal action
An Auckland lawyer wants to hear from veterans affected by Agent Orange and other conditions that could be related to their service
Darren Naden from Tamaki Legal says evidence in a recent Accident Compensation case confirmed that some New Zealand troops in Vietnam operated in areas where the defoliant was dropped – something the army denied for years.
Tamaki Legal is also involved in a Waitangi Tribunal claim about the treatment of Maori service people.
He says the ACC system has been used to deny veterans the help they need.
"It’s alright if you have a sports injury and ACC covers you for your physio and so forth but if you have a claim of this nature where the governments say has been negligent or irresponsible in its deployment of soldiers or its treatment of soldiers post service, ACC is really limiting," Mr Naden says.
He says the defence forces seem to ramp up recruitment of Maori during conflicts, which means there are a disproportionate number of former Maori soldiers and their whanau who are suffering.
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