Fostering an inclusive and diverse workplace 

The CAF strives to ensure a professional work environment in which all members are treated with dignity and respect and are regarded for their dedication to duty, work and contributions above all else.

CAF members are selected for training, promotions, postings, and all career opportunities based on merit, and regardless of gender. They must all meet the same requirements and competencies in the same circumstances. New CAF members are sensitized to the meaning, rights, and responsibilities of gender equity from the moment they begin their careers.

The CAF also aims to build a Defence Team that is comprised of members who reflect the rich diversity of Canada and who are encouraged to contribute through their unique experiences, abilities, and perspectives within a respectful and inclusive environment.

Candidates of Bold Eagle 2017 receive their Tri-Service Cap Badges from Major Jenkins during a Badging Ceremony in Building 27, at Wainwright Garrison, on July 27, 2017

Basic Diversity Training sessions are conducted during basic training to educate new members on personal conduct policies such as:

  • harassment prevention and resolution
  • personal conduct and relationships
  • sexual misconduct, and
  • sexual harassment.

The CAF is committed to eliminating sexual misconduct in its ranks. Since Operation HONOUR was initiated in 2015 to address it, significant foundational work has been completed. Operation HONOUR is an ongoing effort and we will continue to work with external stakeholders and experts to ensure long-term cultural change.

Members promoted to leadership positions attend additional training on diversity during advanced leadership qualification courses.

The CAF is also committed to increasing diversity, and promoting inclusiveness amongst its personnel to enhance operational effectiveness. The CAF Diversity Strategy forms the framework that directs, promotes, and safeguards the respect and dignity of all CAF Members. The CAF Diversity Plan also includes the concept of inclusivity with new research and information on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ2) members of the CAF. 

Work/life balance

Canada’s defence policy, Strong, Secure, Engaged, prioritizes the wellbeing of CAF members and their families to ensure they are well supported. The CAF continually reviews and updates its policies so that both the women and men of the CAF can achieve a better work/life balance.

Additionally, we work to identify and analyze systemic barriers to women’s military careers in areas such as:

  • enrolment
  • offers of indefinite periods of service
  • performance review rating comparisons
  • award nominations, and
  • transition from the military.

The CAF also consults with its Defence Women's Advisory Organization, at both the national and local levels, to gain advice on issues relevant to women in the military. Canada also consults its NATO Allies on gender issues via the NATO Committee on Gender Perspectives.

A member of the Canadian Armed Forces standing with her arms crossed inside a CAF health facility.
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