A Letter to the Force from President Steve Walker

Dear Association Members,

The following letter has been sent to the Force from Association President Steve Walker and the Association Board of Directors.

The letter reflects our support of the serving members of the Force.

James Forrest
Director of Communications
RCMP Veterans’ Associations


Few ordinary people comprehend the fraternity of the Members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. This fraternity is not forgotten by the Members of the RCMP Veterans’ Association. We do understand and share in the incredible pain that many of you are dealing with. For some of you this pain will never be forgotten.

To our brothers and sisters in Nova Scotia who are investigating the crime scenes and dealing with the evidence: right now, you are running on adrenaline and determination to find answers to questions that ultimately may not have answers.

You are being driven by the very motive that caused you to become Members, the desire to make wrong things right. To protect those who could not protect themselves. Your determination is vital and we support you in your will to resolve the questions that will linger.

Making it right is not easy but always desirable. All of us want to do something, to make it right, to correct the wrong, to restore it to the way it was and was meant to be. This is an honourable goal which may not always be attainable but we know that you will continually strive to reach it.

Please keep in mind that this is a country full of citizens who are proud of their national police force and confident in your training, your drive, your integrity and your skillset to get the job done.

The Members’ of the RCMP Veterans’ Association understand – we have been where you are now. We have weathered the tragic occurrences, the senseless calamities, the inequitable way that life suddenly goes sideways. And we have attended, and we have served, and we have protected the citizens of Canada for close to 150 years. It’s the call on our life; it has to be done and we are the right people for the task.

Every naysayer, and every armchair quarterback, and even a few media folk, will come out of the woodwork to tell us how to do our job and how we have failed to do it correctly. It is easy to criticize and give direction after the fact. It is pride and integrity that ignores it and gets on with the task at hand. It has to be done, and we are the people called to do it. We want all of the serving Members of the RCMP to know that we stand with you. We have your back and we understand, and we were doing the job before many of you got here. And now we see our role as standing with you, mourning with you, and supporting you in your task. We get it – we were you, once upon a time.

If we can serve you, now or in the future – if you want someone to speak with, someone who understands and is non-judgmental in the conversation, we are there for you. There is no honour in bottling up your pain; and no shame in sharing it with trusted colleagues, the Wellness Officer in your Division, our VA Advocates, or our RCMP Chaplains across the country.

You need to care for your emotional and spiritual well-being as much as you care for your physical well-being. Please take time to ensure that all is well, with yourself and your colleagues.

And if you need us, we are here for you. We want to remind you that the RCMP have mental health supports available for Members, and that Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) provides support to RCMP Members and their families.

If you are in crisis, call the VAC assistance line available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year at 1-800-268-7708.