Dress instructions | Section 3 Flying and specialist skill badges

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  1. Flying and Specialist Skill badges recognize exceptionally demanding qualifications in an intrinsically hazardous field of activity and are generally worn on the left breast of CAF uniforms. A CAF flying or specialist skill badge shall be authorized for wear by personnel trained and qualified for certain fields of hazardous employment that require CAF members to:
    1. fly in an aircrew/flight crew position or parachute from aircraft;
    2. work underwater either as a member of a submarine crew or as a diver;
    3. work as a qualified explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) technician;
    4. work as a qualified member in a Special Operations unit; or
    5. work as a qualified member of a Close Personal Protection Team.

For the purposes of this category of qualification badges, “hazardous employment” is defined as regularly working in an environment which requires frequent exposure to a high degree of danger or peril in a demanding physical environment.

  1. A CAF specialist skill badge may be awarded to a CAF member of the Regular or Reserve Force after successful completion of the formal CAF training. Members who have received military training or courses from other countries for which the requirements are deemed to be equivalent to CAF  training requirements may  be authorized to wear the applicable CAF specialist skill badge subject to approval by the Individual Training Authority of the environment concerned.


  1. Badges, embroidered in rayon on an appropriately coloured base cloth, shall be worn on the service dress jacket, naval combat dress jacket, and flying clothing.
  2. Metal badges shall be worn on short-sleeved shirts, and on the optional navy high-collared white  jacket. In accordance with environmental, branch or regimental custom, metal badges may also be authorized for wear on white mess dress jackets, in lieu of miniaturized cloth metallic embroidered badges.
  3. Badges, embroidered in gold/silver wire or an approved substitute on an appropriately coloured base cloth, may be worn on the service dress jacket on an optional basis, and shall be worn on full dress and patrol dress tunics/jackets/doublets. Similarly embroidered miniaturized badges shall be worn by authorized members on standard mess dress jackets.
  4. Personnel that have been issued two or more flying and specialist skill badges for permanent retention, including authorized foreign insignia, may wear the badges as for and in conjunction with commendations to a maximum number of badges where by the badges of lower precedence, in miniature metal format, will fit in a line vertically centered on the left pocket or position of the left pocket beginning 3 cm below the bottom of the pocket flap or 9 cm below the pocket opening (navy tunics) and do not go further than 15cm from the top of the pocket flap or opening (navy tunics); The top badge will begin just below the row of medals when wearing medals.
  5. Where additional miniature flying and specialist skill badges are worn, precedence is given to any badge that contains a crown. Where miniature flying and specialist skill badges are worn with commendations, precedence is given to commendations. For details of wear for commendations, see chapter 4, paragraph 18.


  1. All active and former aircrew, flight crew, technicians and specialists who have qualified for permanent retention of the applicable flying or specialist skill badge, shall wear the current pattern authorized by these instructions. Illustrations and instructions for authorized flying badges are in Figures 3-3-1 and 3-3-2 and Annex B.
  2. Qualified members of the Cadet Instructors Cadre (CIC) wear only one flying badge in the following precedence:
    1. CAF aircrew badges;
    2. Air Cadet Pilot badge; or
    3. Air Cadet Glider Pilot badge


  1. Parachute Badge.Qualified parachutists wear the parachute badge with the red maple leaf. The parachute badge with the white maple leaf is authorized for wear by parachutists who have received Paratrooper Allowance for service on strength of one of the following operational airborne formations or units:
    1. specifically designated Regular and Army Reserve sub-units assigned to the airborne role;
    2. Canadian Parachute Centre;
    3. Canadian Special Operations Regiment (CSOR);
    4. Special Service Force;
    5. Canadian Airborne Regiment;
    6. Canadian Airborne Centre;
    7. CAF Parachute Maintenance Depot;
    8. Mobile Strike Force;
    9. Defence of Canada Force;
    10. Canadian Joint Air Training Centre;
    11. 28 Central Ordnance Depot; or
    12. Canadian Army Advanced Warfare Center.
  2. Space Specialist Skill Badge. The Space Specialist Skill Badge recognizes the valuable role of the Joint Space Cadre in developing, employing and generating space capabilities in support of the Defence mission. It is awarded for specific certification and time spent in a dedicated space position.
    1. Verification of training and time in a dedicated space position must be submitted to the approving authority, DG Space, via instructions in AFO 1002-1
  3. Illustrations and instructions for authorized specialist skill badges are in
    Figures 3-3-3 , 3-3-4 , 3-3-5 and Annex B.


  1. Personnel who have been presented foreign Flying and Specialist Skill badges from allied countries as a result of qualifications obtained on a course prescribed by the CAF, shall wear the applicable CAF badge in accordance with wear instructions above.
  2. Where an equivalent CAF badge has not been designed or approved for wear, the foreign badge presented for the prescribed qualification shall be worn like a CAF badge in accordance with wear instructions above. If wearing both a CAF badge and a foreign badge, the CAF badge shall take precedence.
  3. The following prescribed foreign qualification badges are authorized for wear on the CAF uniform:
    1. United States Army Special Forces Badge (a cloth sleeve badge);
    2. United States Sapper Badge (a cloth sleeve badge);
    3. United States Army Ranger Badge (metal pocket badge);
    4. United States Army Special Forces Badge (metal pocket badge);
    5. United States Air Assault Badge (a metal pocket badge);
    6. Colombian Lancero Badge (a metal pocket badge);
    7. Brazilian Jungle Warfare Badge (a metal pocket badge); and
    8. New Zealand AUMANGEA Badge (a cloth sleeve badge).
  4. Personnel who have been presented equivalent badges of allied countries as a result of qualifications obtained on a course prescribed by the CAF, and those who have been presented honorary qualification badges while attached to, or serving with the armed forces of an allied country, may wear the appropriate metal or cloth badge, on the right breast of the service dress and mess dress jacket only while on duty in the specific allied country, when subsequently working with the armed forces of the country or when attending a formal function sponsored by the country concerned. Foreign badges shall be positioned as follows:
    1. Navy (Blue Service Dress Jacket). Centred 0.6 cm (1/4 in.) below the name tag, displacing downward any command badge worn.
    2. Navy (High Collared White Jacket), Army and Air Force. Centred on the right breast pocket, above and evenly spaced with any command badge.
    3. Mess Dress. A single miniature metal foreign flying, or specialist skill badge may be worn on mess dress under the same circumstances as the full size version on service dress. Naval personnel may wear foreign miniatures, but only of a cloth format.
  5. The approval of additional foreign specialty skill badges must follow the process outlined below.


  1. Proposals for the creation of new flying or specialist skill badges shall be staffed in the following manner:
    1. all submissions for new badges must be sponsored by one or more of the three environmental commands (Royal Canadian Navy, Canadian Army, Royal Canadian Air Force) or the operational command (CANSOFCOM) through their Individual Training Authorities;
    2. if CANSOFCOM is the sponsoring command it must seek approval in principle from the three Environmental Commands to address DEU standardization;
    3. NDHQ Group and Branch/corps advisors wishing to propose the creation of a new Specialist Skill badge, must submit their proposal to the appropriate environmental commander(s) for sponsorship;
    4. the sponsoring environmental/operational commander(s), utilizing the criteria established in paragraph 1 will submit the proposal for a new badge to Canadian Defence Academy(CDA) for review. The proposal must include the Qualification Standard, Training Plan and description of the working environment of the new qualification;
    5. once CDA has reviewed the submission, it will be forwarded to NDHQ/DHH for comments, giving particular emphasis to implications for all of the distinctive environmental uniforms, for consideration by the National Defence Clothing and Dress Committee (NDCDC);
    6. NDCDC will review the submissions and make final recommendations to Chief Military Personnel based upon the criteria for creating a new badge and the suitability of the proposed badges;
    7. if approved, DHH will initiate the design phase with the Canadian Heraldic Authority;
    8. once the design has been approved by the CAF Inspector of Colours and Badges it will be sent to Director of Soldier Systems Program Management (DSSPM) for production and distribution.

Figure 3-3-1 Aircrew Flying Badges

Figure 3-3-2 Flight Crew Badges

Figure 3-3-3 Specialist Skill Badges

Figure 3-3-4 Specialist Skill Badges

Figure 3-3-5 Specialist Skill Badges

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