Veterans’ Covenant enshrined in law

Legislation that provides better recognition of the unique nature of military service and further acknowledges the service and sacrifice of veterans and their families passed federal Parliament with bipartisan support in October.

12 December 2019

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel Darren Chester present the first four pins to veterans (from left) Jordan Ivone, Kelly Wright, Scott Lockhart and Anthony Stubing at Parliament House on 24 October.

The Australian Defence Veterans’ Covenant is now enshrined in law, and as part of a wider recognition package, Covenant packs containing the Lapel Pin and Oath are being distributed to the more than 47,000 people who have applied to date.

On 24 October, the Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel Darren Chester presented the first pins to four veterans. The majority of those who have already applied will have received their Covenant packs in the mail.

‘The Covenant, Veteran Card and Lapel Pin gives the community – whether they are employers, businesses, community groups, veteran or sporting organisations – the opportunity to recognise the service and sacrifice of the men and women who have served our nation,’ Mr Chester said. 

Business benefits

Mr Chester launched the business benefits initiative at the Canberra cycling shop Pushys on 3 November alongside representatives from Caltex and Australian Partners of Defence (APOD).

APOD is an organisation founded by veteran families for veteran families to facilitate exclusive business offers to the serving and ex-serving community. It is working with DVA, making available its online platform and expertise in this field. DVA card holders (people with existing Health Cards or the new Veteran Card) have free access to the APOD website and can now sign up directly at apod.com.au using their card details.

At the time of the launch, Veteran Card holders had access to more than 10,000 individual offers from around 500 businesses Australia-wide. If early interest following the launch is any indication, the catalogue of businesses offers may grow considerably in coming weeks and months.

Participating businesses range from small family businesses through to large national chains. They include retailers, travel and tourism operators, accommodation and car hire, entertainment, hospitality, restaurants, as well as service and trade industries from gyms to automotive mechanics. Offers are generally discounts on goods, and range from 2.5 per cent to 40 per cent off. 

How to get business benefits

To gain access to offers and discounts, DVA card holders will need to register with APOD at apod.com.au using their card details.

Each business operates differently so it is important to understand how to gain access to their offer:

  • some accept the card in-store
  • some are online-only
  • most require you to use a unique code to validate an offer. This is the method required by the majority of larger businesses who need a link into their own computer systems.

It is important to register with APOD – both to see which businesses are participating and how to access the offers. If cardholders don't have access to the internet and need assistance with locating offers in their area, they can contact DVA on 1800VETERAN.

For more information about how to apply for and support the Covenant, including eligibility and other frequently asked questions, visit recognition.dva.gov.au.