# 2015-042 - Compulsory Retirement Age (CRA)

Compulsory Retirement Age (CRA)

Case Summary

F&R Date: 2015–04–30

The grievor submitted a request for a Continuing Engagement beyond the Compulsory Retirement Age (CRA) 60 in order to complete 35 years of service. His request was supported by his Commanding Officer and he noted that he met the minimum operational standards related to Universality of Service. He argued that his occupation was undermanned and that CRA 60 violates the equality of rights of citizens within the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (the Charter).

There was no Initial Authority decision as it was the Chief of the Defence Staff's (CDS) decision that was being grieved.

The Committee considered the McKinney v University of Guelph Charter challenge as well as more recent judicial interpretations of section (s.) 15 in relation to mandatory retirement. The Committee determined that CRA 60 is discriminatory but that the breach of the rights as set out in s.15 (1) are reasonably justified under s.1 of the Charter. The Committee also noted that release at age 60 was neither automatic nor absolute in that the CDS had complete discretion to authorize military service beyond CRA 60, pursuant to article 15.17 of the Queen's Regulations and Orders for the Canadian Forces.

The Committee found that the CDS decision to deny the grievor's request on the basis of a lack of military need was reasonable.

CDS Decision Summary

CDS Decision Date: 2016–02–08

The CDS agreed with the Committee's recommendation that the grievance be denied. While the Committee explained that the mandatory retirement was a discriminatory practice under section 15 but justified under section 1 of the Charter, the CDS rather relied on subsection 15(1) of the Canadian Human Rights Act to conclude that it was not a discriminatory practice.

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