Intergovernmental Affairs


  • The Defence Intergovernmental Affairs Organization (Defence IGA) within the Policy Group works to enhance leadership, visibility, coordination and coherence across the Defence Team on Defence files and activities that have intergovernmental dimensions.


  • With a significant footprint in all provinces and territories (PTs), and a defence policy that emphasizes support for domestic and continental defence and national priorities, the Defence Team requires positive relations with all domestic jurisdictions.
  • Defence IGA enables the Defence Team mission by:
    • providing senior leadership visibility into issues that have intergovernmental implications for Defence and/or the broader Government of Canada;
    • supporting the Minister National Defence in engagements with Provincial and Territorial Premiers and Ministers, and Indigenous leaders;
    • bringing greater coherence and coordination to Defence activities with federal, provincial and territorial (FPT) dimensions;
    • identifying opportunities to advance Defence and Government of Canada intergovernmental priorities;
    • contributing to issues management on intergovernmental/FPT issues;
    • liaising with PCO (particularly IGA) on FPT issues;
    • enhancing overall Defence relationships with the provinces and territories.
  • Defence IGA acts as a key enabler for the DND/CAF domestic mission, including the development of strategic level relationships with PTs to enable ongoing engagement and management of challenges and opportunities, including support to CAF personnel. For example, Defence IGA played an important role during the COVID-19 pandemic in terms of the CAF deployment to Long Term Care Facilities in Ontario and Quebec, and facilitating the movement of CAF members and their families across closed provincial borders in the context of the Annual Posting Season.
  • Defence IGA works closely with internal partners, as well as other Government Department and Central Agencies. While excellent relationships between Provincial and Territorial officials and Base, Wing and Regional Joint Task Force Commanders exists, Defence IGA provides strategic guidance and policy support as well as direct and ongoing engagements with PT Intergovernmental Affairs organizations. Increasingly, Defence IGA also provides policy support on strategic relationships with Indigenous governments and organizations, given the importance of the Federal-Provincial-Territorial-Indigenous (FPTI) nexus in light of the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Current Intergovernmental Priorities

  • Culture Change – Independent External Comprehensive Review (IECR) Recommendation 5: Madame Arbour’s IECR recommendation 5 calls for the removal of CAF jurisdiction for criminal sexual offences. National Defence’s response has included the establishment of a Federal-Provincial-Territorial ad hoc Deputy Minister’s Committee to help inform the way forward regarding the implementation of recommendation 5, [SEVERED].
  • Inuit Crown Partnership Committee and Strategic Indigenous Engagement: Defence IGA supports the MND in her participation in the Inuit Crown Partnership Committee and co-Chairs the officials-level Sovereignty, Defence and Security Working Group alongside Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the National Indigenous Organization that represents all Inuit. While ADM IE/DG Indigenous Affairs is the departmental functional authority for Indigenous Affairs writ large, Defence IGA leads strategic-level Indigenous engagement in support of NORAD Modernization initiatives and has begun to play an increasing role in bringing strategic policy considerations into other files that require Indigenous engagement (for example, UNDRIP implementation and related Action Plan Measures).
  • British Army Training Unit at Suffield: The British Army Training Unit at Suffield (BATUS) is a large UK armoured training facility located within Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Suffield, in Southern Alberta, with close ties to the local community. [SEVERED]
  • Seamless Canada: The initiative aims to make it easier for military families to move between jurisdictions as part of Annual Posting Season. The Defence Team liaises with the provinces and territories, provides advice on program initiatives, helps to shape the agenda for working groups and steering committee meetings, and drafts presentations and briefing materials. Of note, the annual meeting was held on May 24 in New Brunswick and was very successful.

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