Joint Task Force North

Joint Task Force North (JTFN) is one of six regional joint task forces of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). The task forces are situated in key locations across Canada. They conduct CAF continental operations.

Canada’s military has operated in the North for more than one hundred years. The area continues to increase in strategic importance.

JTFN Headquarters and detachments

JTFN has its headquarters in Yellowknife, N.W.T. It also has detachments in Iqaluit, Nunavut, and Whitehorse, Yukon.

JTFN Units

JTFN is host to the following military units:

  • 440 Transport Squadron;
  • The Yellowknife Company;
  • 1st Canadian Ranger Patrol Group.

JTFN Area of responsibility (AOR)

JTFN is responsible for leading CAF continental operations in the North. This includes its territorial waterways. The area includes:

  • the Sub-Arctic Region - the part of Canada that lies between 55 and 60 degrees North latitude;
  • the Arctic region - the part of Canada that lies north of 60 degrees North latitude; and
  • the high Arctic region - the part of the Arctic Region that lies north of the Arctic Circle, which is 66.5 degrees North latitude.

Command and tasking authority

The Canadian Joint Operations Command (CJOC) has the CAF lead in the North. The JTFN Commander reports to CJOC and directs the CAF response anywhere in the AOR, if help is requested. This applies to:

  • any request for CAF intervention for disaster relief;
  • any request for CAF support in critical incidents; and
  • any request for Canadian Ranger support to ground search and rescue.

A request for CAF help may come through/from:

  • Canadian Joint Operations Command (CJOC);
  • CJOC’s partners in operations; and
  • territorial governments in the JTFN AOR.

The JTFN Commander has the authority to form mission-appropriate task forces. This includes tasking any and all CAF resources held in the AOR by the:

  • Royal Canadian Navy;
  • Canadian Army; and
  • Royal Canadian Air Force.

JTFN operations

The CAF maintains a continuous watch of the AOR through JTFN. It does so to maintain full awareness of security and defence conditions in the North. JTFN also conducts a series of CAF northern operations and exercises each year with mission partners from:

  • the federal government;
  • territorial governments;
  • northern communities; and
  • defence forces from other countries.
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