Together with the Board of Directors of the RCMP Veterans Association (VA), the RCMP Veteran Womens’ Council (RCMPVWC) members wish to acknowledge and thank all of the members of the ACVA committee for their hard work and dedication in completing their unprecedented study of the Experiences of Canadian Women Veterans. Over the course of more than 20 meetings, you actively listened and learned from the voices of lived experience both RCMP and military. We trust that your over 50 recommendations have been well researched and thought out. Now it is time for action!

Your study laid bare the issues. Its conclusion, and the release of this report, mark a pivot point in Canadian history. Indeed, it presents an opportunity to capture the lessons learned from the mistakes of the past, to ‘dig in,’ to prioritize, and to make the implementation of these recommendations a reality — in stark contrast to the fate of so many others which now sit collecting dust on a shelf.

Because it is only with a robust political action plan to implement these recommendations, from the PMO to his cabinet ministers via their mandate letters, that the RCMP and CAF of the future can be transformed into an employer of choice for the next generation of police officers and soldiers alike. 

Policing and military service will always present certain inherent risks. Workplace sexual violence and trauma should not be one of those risks.

The time is now for our country to assume its rightful place as a world leader in the development of workplace best practices for all uniformed personnel and first responders. With both federal organizations presently in recruiting and retention crises, RCMP and CAF workplaces must be transformed into safe and healthy spaces for all employees, women included. Inter-departmental cooperation will serve to demonstrate that women can be employed safely, trained safely, and provided with equitable care and treatment when service-related injuries do occur. Happy healthy Veterans are the best recruiters in the world.

The RCMP VA is committed to working with the Federal Government, and in collaboration with military Veterans, to ensure the full implementation of all recommendations. Ultimately, individuals who have chosen a life in service to our Country should not only be recognized as Veterans, but maximized as human beings.

As a reminder to all currently serving RCMP members – you are entitled to the services and benefits provided by Veterans Affairs Canada. Do not wait until post-service to familiarize yourself with your entitlements! 

To all former RCMP members – regardless of length of service or whether in receipt of/entitlement to a RCMP pension or not – you are Veterans! View your newly updated Benefits Guide produced by the Royal Canadian Legion here:  Legion Magazine Veterans Benefits Guide