Joint DM/A-CDS Message: Directive on DND/CAF Reopening Strategy (Summer 2021 Posture)

July 5, 2021 - Defence Stories

Message from the Minister and Acting Chief of the Defence Staff

Defence Team,

As COVID-19 cases decrease across the country and more Canadians become vaccinated, thanks in part to the tireless work of Defence Team members, our national outlook is more optimistic. DND/CAF is now in a position to gradually increase our presence in workplaces, resume additional activities, adapt travel restrictions, and moderate public health measures, while ensuring that the protection of the health of the Defence Team and Canadians remains our priority.

L1 leaders will carefully assess the ongoing COVID-19 situation to determine next steps, which will vary by region and operational requirements. Before making decisions, L1s will ensure that advice is sought from the Senior Medical Authority or the functional authority and is informed by key stakeholders, a GBA+ analysis is conducted, local and national union and Regional Authorities consultations are completed, and mitigation measures are effectively communicated.

To guide this reopening effort, we have released the CDS/DM Directive on DND/CAF Reopening Strategy (Summer 2021 Posture). The directive provides you with important information and guidance to all Defence Team members, including:

COVID-19 has had an incredible impact on literally every facet of our lives. As leaders and managers, we must understand that the effects of the pandemic are not always visible or understood, and may have long-term impacts on the health and well-being of our members and employees. In addition, the pandemic has impacted certain groups differently and disproportionately.

The strain of living through a global pandemic cannot be underestimated. For some, a return to the workplace will be a welcome change. For others, it may create or add to existing stress. We must work together to find solutions that maintain operational readiness and productivity, while also supporting and protecting our members. Please keep in mind that what works for one team, or one person, may not work for another. Everyone’s situation will differ; the need for compassion and understanding applies to all.

All Defence Team members are encouraged to read the directive in full. You will also find it on the CAF App, the HR-GO-HR App, and other locations where orders and directives are housed. A variety of additional resources will be released over the coming days and weeks to support teams in the next phase of our work posture.

We’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: the resilience and strength of the Defence Team is remarkable. Thank you for your hard work throughout this pandemic. The finish line is in sight. As long as we keep doing what we’re doing, we will get there soon.


Jody Thomas

Deputy Minister

LGen Wayne Eyre

Acting Chief of the Defence Staff

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