11/08/2013 09:55 EST | Updated 01/23/2014 10:53 EST

B.C. legions want to allow children for special events

The Royal Canadian Legion says it wants to modernize and allow veterans and their families to bring children into the legion halls for special events.

The legion's regional president Angus Stanfield says they are asking the province as part of the review of its liquor policy to give them a new license that would allow minors through the door.

"You can imagine a veteran wanting to bring his grand kids in and show them some memorabilia, introduce them to his friends, show them the things that are important," says Stanfield.

Inga Kruze, the executive director for B.C. and Yukon, says right now minors can only come into a legion on Remembrance Day.

"The change we are asking for is very small, it is just that we can have times, and events and hours to have our families in for meals and music nights."

Stanfield says the legions are struggling financially and they want to modernize so they can boost memberships and revenues.

They point out the revenues generated by the legion allow the institution to contribute to programs to help veterans like Ken Keen, who served in Afghanistan, get his degree at BCIT.

"It is really is a cause and effect thing on a bigger scale. Giving these legions all across the country a way to be viable and giving them more flexibility is key," says Keen.

Not all members support the idea. But the executive says this is the only way to keep the 152 legion halls across B.C alive. Without more flexibility, it could be the end of an iconic Canadian institution, they say.

"Let us take care of our members, let us marry them, let us bury them, let us have their families in, we can look after our own," says Kruze.