DAOD 3020-3, Canadian Forces Postal Service


1. Introduction

Date of Issue: 2019-05-02

Application: This DAOD is a directive that applies to employees of the Department of National Defence (DND employees) and an order that applies to officers and non-commissioned members of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF members).

Supersession: CFAO 57-3, Canadian Forces Postal Service

Approval Authority: Director of Staff, Strategic Joint Staff (DOS SJS)

Enquiries:

  • Strategic Joint Staff J4 Transportation Postal Policy & Systems 5 (Strat J4 Tn 5) (for policy)
  • Canadian Joint Operation Command J4 Postal Operations (CJOC J4 Post Ops) (for operations)

2. Definitions

Canadian Armed Forces mail (courrier des Forces armées canadiennes)

Mail sent using the Canadian Forces Postal Service. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 695345)

Canadian Armed Forces morale mail (courrier d’encouragement des Forces armées canadiennes)

Mail sent under an authorized morale and welfare program, with a free mode of mail delivery, to DND employees, CAF members and other authorized persons serving outside Canada in areas provided postal services by the Canadian Forces Postal Service. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 695346)

Canadian Forces Post Office (CFPO) (bureau de poste des Forces canadiennes (BPFC))

Means a military post office operated outside Canada by the Canadian Forces Postal Service to provide postal services to persons to whom the Armed Forces Postal Regulations apply. (Section 2 of the Armed Forces Postal Regulations).

Canadian Forces Postal Service (Service postal des Forces canadiennes)

The postal service authorized to operate post offices in accordance with the Canada Post Corporation Act for the movement of CAF mail by DND and CAF postal personnel within and outside Canada, including the necessary system of infrastructure, facilities and equipment. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 695347)

Fleet Mail Office (FMO) (bureau de poste de navale (BPN))

Means a military post office operated by the Canadian Forces Postal Service to provide postal services to any vessel of the Canadian Forces commissioned as a vessel of war. (Section 2 of the Armed Forces Postal Regulations).

mail (envois ou courrier)

Means mailable matter from the time it is posted to the time it is delivered to the addressee thereof. (Subsection 2(1) of the Canada Post Corporation Act)

mailable matter (objets)

Means any message, information, funds or goods that may be transmitted by post. (Subsection 2(1) of the Canada Post Corporation Act)

military post office (bureau de poste militaire)

An authorized Canada Post Corporation corporate retail outlet operated by the Canadian Forces Postal Service to provide postal services to the DND and the CAF. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 695348)

official mail (courrier officiel)

CAF mail relating solely to official DND or CAF operations or other activities. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 695349)

post office (bureaux de poste)

Includes any place, receptacle, device or mail conveyance authorized by the Canada Post Corporation for the posting, receipt, sorting, handling, transmission or delivery of mail. (Subsection 2(1) of the Canada Post Corporation Act)

3. Abbreviations

Abbreviation Complete Word or Phrase
AOR
area of responsibility
CBSA
Canada Border Services Agency
CFLTC
Canadian Forces Logistics Training Centre
CFPO
Canadian Forces Post Office
CFPS
Canadian Forces Postal Service
CFPU
Canadian Forces Postal Unit

CJOC

Canadian Joint Operations Command

CO

commanding officer

Comd

commander

CPC Canada Post Corporation
Det
detachment
FMO Fleet Mail Office
HMCS
Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship
MPO military post office
OUTCAN out-of-Canada
PS & MOD
Postage Stamp and Money Order Depot
SJS
Strategic Joint Staff
VCDS Vice Chief of the Defence Staff

4. Overview

Context

4.1 While CPC has the sole and exclusive privilege under the Canada Post Corporation Act of collecting, transmitting and delivering letters to addressees within Canada, the DND and the CAF have established the CFPS to operate CPC post offices and process CAF mail in support of DND and CAF national and international operations and other activities in accordance with:

  1. the Canada Post Corporation Act;
  2. the Armed Forces Postal Regulations and other regulations made under the Canada Post Corporation Act;
  3. the Canada Postal Guide; and
  4. the Universal Postal Union acts and regulations.

Movement of CAF Mail

4.2 SJS must ensure that CAF mail is moved within and outside Canada in the most efficient and cost effective manner possible.

Canadian Forces Postal Service

4.3 The CFPS is comprised of the following organizations and personnel that oversee all postal matters affecting the DND and the CAF:

  1. Strat J4, as the functional authority for postal policy;
  2. Strat J4 Tn 5, as the technical authority for postal services;
  3. CJOC J4, as the operational authority for postal services; and
  4. CFPU, as the tactical level authority for the support of postal services in Canada and for deployed operations and HMCSs, with:
    1. three Regional Dets (Eastern (Halifax), Central (Trenton) and Western (Victoria));
    2. two FMOs for east and west coast naval postal support;
    3. MPOs for domestic postal support;
    4. CFPOs; and
    5. CFPS personnel in the environmental commands.

4.4 CFPS personnel:

  1. are trained by the Postal Training Cadre of the CFLTC; and
  2. have responsibilities similar to those of CPC employees to enforce the Canada Post Corporation Act, its regulations and CPC standards while providing postal services and support to the DND and the CAF.

4.5 The CFPS is considered an extension of CPC and operates CFPOs and FMOs in accordance with the Canada Post Corporation Act.

CPC Support

4.6 In support of domestic MPOs and OUTCAN CFPOs, CPC provides CPC signage, forms and other material. CPC also provides information technology support and updates to their Retail Point of Service system.

5. Official and Unofficial Mail

General

5.1 There are two types of CAF mail moved by the CFPS: official mail and unofficial mail. Official mail must have an official return address authority. Only official mail may be sent at government expense. All CAF mail other than official mail is unofficial mail and moves at the expense of the sender. Unofficial mail includes:

  1. personal letters, parcels and other material;
  2. issued personal military items such as uniforms, boots and berets;
  3. health claims;
  4. resumes;
  5. mess dues and bills;
  6. club, association and kit shop items and newsletters;
  7. donations of charitable goods, other than for the National Defence Workplace Charitable Campaign;
  8. letter events where participation revenues are collected; and
  9. Christmas, sympathy, birthday and other personal cards.

5.2 Any questions regarding official mail and unofficial mail should be directed to the appropriate channel of communication or chain of command prior to shipping. If purported official mail is found to be unofficial mail, the mail must be returned to the sender.

Mail Responsibility

5.3 Responsibility for the custody, protection and delivery of CAF mail is transferred from CPC

to the DND or CAF upon delivery to an authorized DND or CAF representative.

Prohibitions

5.4 It is prohibited for a DND employee or CAF member to open CAF mail unless expressly authorized by CPC in accordance with the Canada Post Corporation Act or the Customs Act.

5.5 It is prohibited for a DND employee or CAF member responsible for the handling of CAF mail to keep, conceal, delay, detain or abandon it.

6. International Mail

General

6.1 Under the authority of Canada Post Corporation Act, the CFPS operates CFPOs in order to provide postal services outside Canada. This permits CAF mail to be sent at domestic rates to Canada instead of having to use the postal services of the host country and international rates.

Eligibility to Use CFPOs

6.2  The following are eligible to use CFPOs to send and receive CAF mail:

  1. CAF members; and
  2. Canadian citizens resident outside Canada who are:
    1. a dependant of a CAF member serving outside Canada;
    2. a DND employee; or
    3. a representative of a department of the Government of Canada, the government of a province or territory or a Canadian private agency, providing support in respect of DND and CAF operations or other activities.

6.3 It is prohibited for a DND employee or CAF member to use a CFPO on behalf of an ineligible person or to conduct a commercial enterprise. Such use jeopardizes international agreements and may result in the loss by the DND employee or CAF member of their right to use CFPOs.

Postal Services Outside Canada

6.4 Two-way postal services can only be provided when a CFPO has been established outside Canada. All CAF mail sent to Canada must bear sufficient Canadian postage at domestic Canadian rates for its delivery to destination using CPC once the mail is customs cleared by the CBSA. CFPOs provide the same range of postal services as CPC retail outlets, including money orders, Xpresspost and stamps. A CFPO must be managed by a qualified postmaster with the rank of at least sergeant.

6.5 One-way postal services consists only of CAF mail being sent from Canada to DND employees and CAF members serving at locations outside Canada. The local Comd or CO at the location outside Canada must appoint a postal point of contact to liaise with CJOC J4 Post Ops and CFPU for postal matters. As there is no CFPO established, there is no capability to send mail back to Canada using the CFPS.

6.6 Accordingly, if there is no CFPO established, any mail to be sent from outside Canada must use available means, such as host country postal service, private courier or the postal service of a foreign armed force. The cost to send unofficial mail is an individual responsibility.

Procedure to Request Postal Services for a CAF Contingent Outside Canada

6.7 The following table outlines the procedure to request postal services through CFPS for a CAF contingent outside Canada:

Stage
Who does it?
Action

1

VCDS (for OUTCAN) or CJOC (for operations)
  • Identify to CJOC J4 Post Ops the requirement and funding for the postal services.

2

CJOC J4 Post Ops
  • Create a postal support plan.
  • If two-way postal services are required, send the request to Strat J4 Tn 5 to activate a CFPO. 

3

Strat J4 Tn 5
  • Confirm that the postal support plan complies with national and international postal policies.
  • Obtain approval to activate the CFPO from CPC.
4
CJOC J4 Post Ops
  • Issue a postal operating instruction.
  • Activate the CFPO to initiate the postal services once authorized by Strat J4 Tn 5.
5
task force Comds and COs of CAF contingents outside Canada
  • When approval is granted, provide appropriate secure accommodation and locally available transport.
6 CFPO postmaster or postal point of contact
  • Provide postal services in accordance with the postal operating instruction.

6.8 When requesting postal services, it is important to take into consideration that:

  1. the CFPS mandate is to provide postal support to deployed operations; and
  2. the CFPS does not have the resources and facilities to significantly expand beyond that mandate.

Unofficial Mail

6.9 Unofficial mail destined to deployed CAF members must be addressed specifically to the individual using the appropriate Belleville address for the contingent located outside Canada or to the appropriate HMCS address. All unofficial mail being sent must conform to CPC regulations and standards and CFPS instructions.

Customs

6.10 International CAF mail, including CAF morale mail, is subject to Canadian customs laws and the laws of both the country of origin and the country of destination.

6.11 Mail enters Canada only by entry at Montreal, Toronto or Vancouver for appropriate

customs clearance by the CBSA. CAF mail can only be sent to Canada using sustainment flights that terminate in Trenton, Ontario. CFPU personnel must ensure that CAF mail arriving by a sustainment flight in Trenton is sent in bond to Toronto for customs clearance by the CBSA. CAF mail is then sent to destination by CPC.

Methods of Shipment

6.12 CAF mail is forwarded to and from international destinations primarily using available CAF sustainment flights, or commercial couriers and international air mail, as authorized by CJOC J4 Post Ops.

7. Domestic Mail

General

7.1 The full range of postal services may be provided at a defence establishment by:

  1. the CFPS; or
  2. a CPC retail outlet.

7.2 Limited postal services may be provided at a defence establishment by a base, wing or station mail room.

7.3 All significant postal matters must be referred to the respective CFPU Det that provides postal technical support as required for the specific AOR.

Request for Postal Services at a Defence Establishment in Canada

7.4 The following table outlines the procedure for requesting postal services through the CFPS and CPC at a defence establishment in Canada:

Stage
Who does it?
Action

1

Comd of a base or wing or CO of a station
  • Identify the need for postal services and inform their respective CFPU Regional Det (Eastern, Central or Western).

2

CFPU Regional Det Comd (Eastern, Central or Western)
  • Assist the base, wing or station in determining the necessary postal requirements to establish postal services.
  • Prepare the request to activate the post office and send it to the CO CFPU, if required.

3

CO CFPU
  • Forward the request to Strat J4 Tn 5 for recommendation and forwarding to CPC.
4
Strat J4 Tn 5
  • Liaise with CPC to obtain approval to establish the post office, if required. 
5
Comd of a base or wing or CO of a station
  • When approval is granted:
    • provide accommodation in accordance with the physical security requirements;
    • construct the interior finish of the accommodation, using any special fittings provided by CPC;
    • maintain the surrounding inside and outside areas of the accommodation;
    • on approval of the appropriate authority at a defence establishment, erect secure mail boxes in messes, canteens and other buildings; and
    • provide transport and other resources, including necessary network connections, pens, paper and stationary.

8. Compliance and Consequences

Compliance

8.1 DND employees and CAF members must comply with this DAOD. Should clarification of the policies or instructions set out in this DAOD be required, DND employees and CAF members may seek direction through their channel of communication or chain of command, as appropriate. Managers and military supervisors have the primary responsibility for and means of ensuring the compliance of their DND employees and CAF members with this DAOD.

Consequences of Non-Compliance

8.2 DND employees and CAF members are accountable to their respective managers and military supervisors for any failure to comply with the direction set out in this DAOD. Non-compliance with this DAOD may have consequences for both the DND and the CAF as institutions, and for DND employees and CAF members as individuals. Suspected non‑compliance may be investigated. Managers and military supervisors must take or direct appropriate corrective measures if non-compliance with this DAOD has consequences for the DND or the CAF. The decision of a level one advisor or other senior official to take action or to intervene in a case of non-compliance, other than in respect of a decision under the Code of Service Discipline regarding a CAF member, will depend on the degree of risk resulting from the non-compliance and other circumstances of the case.

8.3 The nature and severity of the consequences resulting from non-compliance should be commensurate with the circumstances of the non-compliance and other relevant circumstances.

Consequences of non-compliance may include one or more of the following:

  1. the ordering of the completion of appropriate learning, training or professional development;
  2. the entering of observations in individual performance evaluations;
  3. increased reporting and performance monitoring;
  4. the withdrawal of any authority provided under this DAOD to a DND employee or CAF member;
  5. the reporting of suspected offences to responsible law enforcement agencies or CPC;
  6. the application of specific consequences as set out in the Canada Corporation Act, other applicable laws, codes of conduct, and DND and CAF policies and instructions;
  7. other administrative action, including the imposition of disciplinary measures, for a DND employee;
  8. other administrative or disciplinary action, or both, for a CAF member; and
  9. the imposition of liability on the part of Her Majesty in right of Canada, DND employees and CAF members.

Note – In respect of the compliance of DND employees, see the Treasury Board Framework for the Management of Compliance for additional information.

9. Responsibilities

Responsibility Table

9.1 The following table identifies the responsibilities associated with this DAOD:

The …
is or are responsible for …

VCDS

  • providing approval authority for CAF mail support, including CAF morale mail, to VCDS OUTCAN locations;
  • providing approval authority for the CAF morale mail program;
  • allocating funds for the movement of CAF mail to and from VCDS OUTCAN locations; and
  • planning, coordinating and monitoring postal support to VCDS OUTCAN locations in accordance with SJS postal policies, orders, directives and guidance.

Strat J4

  • providing strategic framework and leadership on all CFPS activities;
  • developing SJS postal policies, orders, directives and guidance;
  • acting as the DND and CAF representative to CPC;
  • providing accountability to CPC for CFPS activities;
  • managing CFPS activities and implementing CPC policy within the DND and the CAF;
  • ensuring CPC standards are applied in CFPS activities as appropriate;
  • providing technical advice on postal matters affecting the DND and the CAF;
  • acting as lead authority for contingency measures during strike and other disruptions of services provided by CPC;
  • ensuring the regular verification and inspection of CFPS post offices; and
  • conducting staff assistance visits to CFPS post offices and other facilities.

Comd CJOC

  • providing approval authority for CAF mail support, including CAF morale mail, to deployed operations;
  • managing the cost of moving CAF mail to deployed operations;
  • planning, coordinating and monitoring postal support outside Canada; and
  • providing technical advice on postal matters for operations.
Comd, Canadian Forces Joint Operational Support Group
  • providing command and control over CFPU activities and personnel; and
  • operating a postal financial service section that verifies and consolidates CFPO and PS & MOD cash accounts for forwarding to CPC.
CO CFPU
  • implementing SJS postal policies, orders, directives and guidance;
  • providing postal services to bases, wings and stations with established CFPS;
  • acting as the postal clerk force generator for domestic and international assignment;
  • conducting, on behalf of SJS, regular verification and inspection of all MPOs;
  • planning and coordinating postal arrangements for operations and exercises in Canada;
  • centralizing, sorting and dispatching CAF mail to Canadian Forces Station Alert and outside Canada, as planned and established by CJOC, and to the FMOs for deployed HMCSs;
  • monitoring the efficient and effective operation of the CAF morale mail program within Canada and its compliance with SJS policies, orders, directives and guidance;
  • operating a PS & MOD through which CFPOs are resupplied with postal values;
  • providing technical advice on CAF postal matters to units and other elements in Canada, to deployed HMCSs and on routine matters to deployed operations; and
  • operating postal stores in order to provide material and support for OUTCAN CFPOs.
FMO Det Comd 
  • centralizing, sorting and dispatching CAF mail to deployed HMCSs;
  • providing technical advice on all CAF postal matters related to deployed HMCSs;
  • providing training and briefings to postal orderlies of HMCSs; and
  • inspecting HMCS postal work spaces and verifying procedures.
Comds of formations, bases and wings
  • providing approving authority for CAF mail support, including CAF morale mail, within their AOR;
  • managing the custody, protection and delivery of CAF mail at local mail handling facilities;
  • implementing the CAF morale mail program within their AOR;
  • administering the cost of moving CAF morale mail to:
    • CFPU Trenton, Ontario; or
    • the applicable FMO of a deployed HMCS;
  • ensuring that CAF morale mail is forwarded once weekly;
  • providing material and support for MPOs; and
  • imposing CAF mail size and weight limitations and determining the method of shipping based on their existing resources, if required.
COs of HMCSs
  • notifying their respective FMO of upcoming deployments requiring postal support;
  • ensuring postal orderlies are fully aware of their postal duties; and
  • notifying their respective FMO of mail reception and outgoing mail despatches along with changes to their itinerary.
CFPO postmaster for two-way postal services
  • providing a full range of postal services, including receiving, distributing and shipping CAF mail;
  • notifying CJOC J4 Post Ops of postal issues;
  • providing postal technical advice on all CAF postal matters within their AOR; and
  • ensuring security and appropriate distribution of CAF mail within their AOR.
contingent postal point of contact for one-way postal services
  • acknowledging receipt of CAF mail to the CFPU;
  • notifying CJOC J4 Post Ops of postal issues; and
  • ensuring security and appropriate distribution of CAF mail within their AOR.
postal military occupation chief warrant officer
  • providing advice to SJS on postal military occupation matters.
DND employees and CAF members
  • including an official DND or CAF return address authority on official mail;
  • using unofficial mail, not official mail, for personal matters; and
  • using CFPOs only on behalf of authorized persons and not for the conduct of a commercial enterprise.

10. References

Acts, Regulations, Central Agency Policies and Policy DAOD

Other References

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: