Peace operations

Canada has deployed police officers to peace missions around the world since 1989. Almost 4,000 Canadian police officers have been to over 33 countries, including Sudan, Kosovo, West Bank, Haiti and Afghanistan. They help rebuild or strengthen police services in countries experiencing conflict or upheaval. Through police participation in these missions, Canada commits to building a more secure world.

Serving on a mission is a unique opportunity for police officers to contribute to public safety in unstable countries. It also allows them to improve their leadership, and problem-solving and intercultural skills. This benefits their police services and the communities they serve at home.

How it works

Requests for Canadian police come from organizations such as the United Nations or from specific countries. The decision to deploy Canadian police is made via the Canadian Police Arrangement (CPA), a partnership between Global Affairs Canada, Public Safety Canada and the RCMP. The goal of the CPA is to support the Government of Canada's commitments to build a more secure world through Canadian police participation in international peacekeeping and peace support operations, which are critical to longer-term security system reform and conflict-prevention efforts.

The RCMP manages the deployment of Canadian police, including:

  • planning and evaluating missions
  • selecting and training personnel
  • providing support throughout the deployment

Canadian police personnel deployed abroad come from a wide range of police services, not only the RCMP. These police officers have many roles depending on the mission, including:

  • training, mentoring and monitoring
  • supporting free and fair elections
  • investigating human rights violations
  • responding to humanitarian crises

Canadian police can also work on specialized teams that focus on areas of:

  • community policing
  • management development
  • serious and organized crime

Canadian police in Haiti, on 10-year anniversary of the earthquake

A 102-white rose tribute to C/Supt Doug Coates and Sgt Mark Gallagher on the Haiti Earthquake Memorial. The memorial is for the 102 UN personnel who perished in the devastating earthquake of 2010.

January 12, 2020, marks the 10th anniversary of the devastating earthquake in Haiti. The RCMP remembers those who lost their lives, including our own C/Supt Doug Coates and Sgt Mark Gallagher. In their effort to better the lives of others, Doug and Mark made sacrifices and ultimately gave their lives in the service of peace. Our thoughts are with their loved ones during this time of remembrance.

In the aftermath of the earthquake, members of the Canadian police contingent showed bravery and resilience, rescuing victims from crumbling buildings, providing first aid and providing security in the turbulent streets of Port-au-Prince.

Haiti landscape

During the first year after the earthquake, Canada's police peacekeepers were instrumental in helping to re-establish law and order. They provided crucial community-policing services in the displaced persons camps, where more than one million Haitians lived.

A part of Doug and Mark's legacy, Haiti remains Canada's longest-standing police contribution to a UN peace support operation.

Canadian police have played an integral part in Haiti over the years. At first, they provided technical expertise for the establishment of the Haitian National Police (HNP) Academy, resulting in on-the-job training and guidance to more than 5,000 new Haitian police officers deployed throughout the country.

Cst. Geneviève Noel (SPVM) and Det-Sgt. Genevieve Loyer (SPVM) with HNP Inspector Alberte Destin Jean in Haiti

Over the years, they supported the HNP with security support during their presidential elections and provided strategic advice in the areas of management, professional standards, training and mentoring.

Today, deployed Canadian police in Haiti contribute to initiatives in support of the Women, Peace and Security agenda by strengthening efforts to prevent, address, investigate and prosecute Sexual and Gender-Based Violence.

More than ever, like Doug and Mark, Canadian police are committed to making a difference in Haiti.

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