11/09/2017 11:40 EST | Updated 11/09/2017 12:01 EST

Retired reservist says he's being denied pension benefit for time spent serving

REGINA — A retired reservist who served in Afghanistan says he's being denied the opportunity to buy back pension benefits from his teaching job.

Rod Dignean took a one-year leave from his position at a Saskatchewan school for a tour of duty with the Canadian Armed Forces in 2013.

Dignean says he's since been trying to buy back pension benefits through the Saskatchewan Teachers' Federation, but has been told he's not eligible because he wasn't on an educational leave.

The 60-year-old says he assumed he could buy back the benefits because he was being deployed on behalf of Canada, and feels disappointed that he's not being supported as a teacher or a veteran.

Labour Minister Don Morgan says the province has legislation to protect reservists' jobs.

Morgan says he needs more details and has asked the ministry to find out what the stumbling block is in Dignean's pension situation.