This study proposes a plan to reform the state veteran compensation system.
The current veteran compensation system was introduced in the 1950s after the Korean War, to enhance the livelihood, and promote the welfare of, war victims, patriots, and veterans. However, the system is inefficient and its compensation criteria are not clear, as it has been frequently revised, due to the demands of beneficiaries and political needs. Moreover, because of the limited government budget, compensations guarantee only minimum support. Therefore, it is necessary to adjust the veteran reward system in a way that promotes direct compensation, rather than indirect compensation.
Compensations for veterans can be divided into several categories-- compensations for honoring contributions, ordinary compensations, and compensations for social security. Veteran compensations should mainly compensate their contributions and sacrifice, with ancillary compensations for social security. The veteran compensation system should be set up in a way that compensates in proportion with the degree of a veteran’s sacrifices and contribution. In theory, the compensation criteria are set in consideration of opportunity cost: that is, the difference between the utility that the victims could have enjoyed if they had not sacrificed and present utility. The system should also take into account the present state of the compensation organization its administration.
Examinations of and decisions on the level of disability should consider anatomical loss and functional loss that influences the jobs or incomes of the disabled. Since it is almost impossible to evaluate a decision based on the degree of functional loss of veterans, it is necessary to develop a system based on anatomical loss, similar to the 14-level criteria currently used in the industrial accidents compensation program.
Based on these assessments, this study proposes following policy reforms:
First, the current veteran compensation system needs to be focus on an allowance that guarantees basic livelihood through the establishment of fair and objective standards corresponding to degrees of sacrifice and contribution. The system also needs to be revised in a way that provides additional compensation to people whose pension is short of meeting the cost of basic livelihood, based on the government’s criteria for public assistance.
Second, currently, the basic pension given to veterans is for base living expenses. The system should be changed so as to provide an additional amount of money in consideration of physical disabilities and wartime contribution, in addition to the basic pension.
Third, as to the finance of veteran compensation, third and fourth proposals were proved to be more effective when estimated (1988-92) based on the assumption that the system would be improved. Any reform should be made gradually, so as to minimize its impact on the national economy, and in consideration of the financial capability of the government.
Fourth, compensations for veterans can be divided into direct and indirect support measures. As most of the veterans are elderly, the compensation system needs to be changed in a way to focus on directly guaranteeing their livelihood. Increases in the number of beneficiaries need to be curbed as much as possible during peacetime.
국가보훈보상제도의 개편방안(A state veteran compensation system reform plan)
|Series Title; No||연구보고 / 89-04|
|Subject Country||South Korea(Asia and Pacific)|
|Subject||Social Development < Social Welfare|
|Holding||KDI; KDI School|