Joint DM/CDS Message: CDS/DM Directive on DND/CAF Operating and Reconstituting in a Persistent COVID-19 Environment

February 25, 2022 - Defence Stories

Message from the Deputy Minister and the Chief of the Defence Staff

Defence Team,

As we approach the two-year mark since the Defence Team began operating within a COVID-19 environment, we recognize the reality that COVID-19 has become part of our lives and appears as though it will remain for some time. As such, we have released the new CDS/DM Directive on DND/CAF Operating and Reconstituting in a Persistent COVID-19 Environment which moves away from a mindset focused exclusively on avoidance to one more tailored towards risk mitigation.

The new directive – which supersedes the Summer 2021 posture – provides you with important information and guidance as we begin to revert some processes back to pre-pandemic conditions and increase our presence in the physical workplace, including information on the continuation of Public Health Measures (PHMs), a revised Rapid Antigen Detection Testing (RADT) program, and updated travel guidance.

You’re likely wondering – what does the immediate future of work look like for the Defence Team? Specific decisions about day-to-day operations and the reintegration of Defence Team members into the physical workplace will continue to be made at the local-level, based on regional realities, local health conditions and operational requirements, and will be communicated to you. L1s will be responsible for seeking advice from Senior Medical Authorities and local Workplace Health and Safety Committees, consulting regional authorities, and ensuring mitigation measures are properly communicated prior to resuming activities in the workplace. The Defence Team will continue to employ a hybrid workforce where it makes sense, leveraging the success that we have experienced thus far by affording our teammates flexibility.

All Defence Team members are encouraged to read the directive in full. We also suggest you review the Maple Leaf to read an article outlining key changes within the new directive as well as visit the FAQ: Business Resumption Directive web page for new questions and answers. If you have any additional questions, you are encouraged to consult your Chain of Command or submit them through the Ask Anything: COVID-19 inbox.

The resilience and strength of the Defence Team is remarkable. Thank you for your hard work throughout these past two years. We ask all of you to continue adhering to PHMs and ensuring both the DND and CAF COVID-19 Vaccination policies are upheld, including maintaining accurate and current attestation information for all current and future personnel on MCS – Monitor MASS for CAF members and GC-VATS for public service employees. As we make transitions to our posture, we must continue to remain vigilant for signs of stress among Defence Team members. Everyone’s situation will differ; the need for compassion and understanding applies to all.

Please remain vigilant, stay safe, and take care of yourselves and others. Together, we will get through this.


Bill Matthews
Deputy Minister of National Defence

General Wayne Eyre
Deputy Minister of National Defence Chief of the Defence Staff

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