"If you're considering a peace operation – do it! It's so rewarding!"
Canada's participation in international peace operations helps build a more secure world.
- support national and international efforts to reform police forces
- build a country's capacity to provide effective police services
- improve safety and security in communities facing poverty, conflict and upheaval
Be a mentor
Police officers from municipal, provincial, regional police forces and the RCMP train and mentor our counterparts in troubled states around the world.
Over 35 police services take part in the program. Participating members bring experience that enriches Canada's police contribution to international peace operations.
A rewarding opportunity
You can make a difference for people who live in poverty and chaos. Serving on a mission can be a time of great personal and professional growth. It's an excellent development opportunity.
Build your skills
An international peace mission helps police officers to build skills in unique ways. Leadership, problem-solving and organizational skills develop in ways they might never in Canada. Officers gain insights on how to deal with new environments, adversity and change. They learn to be more aware and understanding. They are also more appreciative of the importance of effective communication.
Apply your skills at home
Canadian police are sought-after in mission and respected by international partners. They're often assigned positions with greater responsibilities than their ranks in Canada, including command positions. These skills can be applied to supervisory and managerial positions back in Canada.
Experience different cultures
Working abroad exposes you to different cultures from all around the world. You will:
- immerse yourself in the culture of the host country
- learn from your international colleagues about their cultures
- be able to refine your interpersonal skills
- enhance your ability to communicate with colleagues from around the world
- have an opportunity to see part of the world in ways you would never be able to otherwise
It is not only the individual who benefits from mission experience. Police agencies have the unique opportunity to represent Canada on the international stage.
Want to know more? Here are resources for before the mission, during and after.
Are you or your partner considering a mission? Read Before the Mission, to help guide you and your partner in making a joint decision. Email RCMP.Health-SanteIntl.GRC@rcmp-grc.gc.ca to ask for a copy.
Police selection criteria and process
Serving on a mission is an exciting opportunity to travel and work overseas while supporting peace and security.
The Canadian Police Arrangement facilitates deployments to international peace operations. This partnership consists of Global Affairs Canada, Public Safety Canada and the RCMP.
The RCMP's Deployment Services manages the deployment of Canadian police personnel to countries experiencing conflict or upheaval.
Recruiting and selection
You must meet selection criteria set by:
- the United Nations or other participating multilateral organizations
- the RCMP
- your own police service
You will be interviewed for United Nations and European Union positions.
Your police service's Human Resources advisors look after:
- recruiting candidates
- making the initial selection based on the criteria provided
The International Recruitment, Screening and Selection team looks after:
- final recommendations for selection of candidates based on the entire process
- helping participating services throughout the process
General selection criteria
You need to:
- have at least 5 years of operational service as a civilian police officer
- have strong interpersonal, organizational, and teamwork skills
- have experience in leadership and/or coaching, whether informal or formal
- show flexibility
- be computer literate, with knowledge of basic Microsoft Office applications
- have excellent oral and written communications skills in either French or English
- have experience with standard shift 4x4 motor vehicles for some missions
- be ready to work and live in a difficult environment
- meet International Health Protection and Wellness Unit medical and psychological requirements
- have current certification in First Aid/CPR
- have current qualifications for mandatory police training (firearms, baton, pepper spray, etc.)
- complete specific fitness requirements in each posting for mission, such as:
- Physical Abilities Requirement Evaluation (PARE)
- Note: 4-minute standard may not apply, depending on mission
- 20 Meter Shuttle Run test
- Physical Abilities Requirement Evaluation (PARE)
Selection criteria and processes may be different than above depending on the mission. Consult the specific bulletin to confirm your eligibility.
The following assessments will determine your medical fitness for mission duty:
- laboratory and other specialized tests
- a full psychological evaluation
You can't have any ailments or conditions which need medical or psychological consultation or monitoring while in mission.
You may not be eligible for missions if you're taking medications for certain conditions.
If you think we won't find you fit, reach out to the International Health Protection and Wellness team before you apply.
The team keeps in touch with counterparts in RCMP Divisions and partner police services to keep them informed of your pre- and post-mission medical requirements.
On-line training (for UN missions)
If you're selected to go on a UN mission, before attending International Policing Support Operations Training (IPSOT) in Ottawa you'll need to complete:
- online trainng modules
- a short research assignment on the mission country
This will help you prepare for working and living in the mission country. You need to achieve a mark of at least 80%.
You'll receive a certificate for each module, which will be included in your mission application package. RCMP members will receive a HRMIS credit for the course.
Preliminary and joining instructions
If you passed the initial selection process, you'll receive the "Preliminary Instructions" package. This contains forms to complete and information on the health evaluation process.
The "Joining Instructions" package will follow. It will have extra instructions on preparations for mission, and information about:
- training dates and location
- mission-related expense claims and benefits
Before leaving for your mission, you'll attend IPSOT in Ottawa to prepare you for working and living in an international mission. Training lasts 3 weeks. You'll return home before deploying to your mission.
The session is divided into sections, with content needed for each mission:
- operations (mandatory skills training)
- use of force
- health briefing
- health hazards
- medication required for a given mission
- administrative briefings
- travel allowances
- Canada Labour Code
- Global Affairs Canada briefings
- cultural awareness briefings
- social and cultural norms of the country of posting
- how to work with various international partners
- specialized training (specific to each mission), can include:
- human rights and international law
- the structure of the UN
- the role of UN Police
- mine awareness
- map reading
- any other relevant training
Things to consider before applying
Here are some of the elements you and your loved ones should consider in your discussions.
Family support is critical
You may have made your own career decisions in the past. Service on a mission requires family commitment and support.
A mission participant will be living in a fragile state, a great distance away, in most cases for 12 months. It's important to make sure that:
- your family is prepared to cope with extra burdens
- the partner who stays behind has a strong support structure to help out (family, friends, caregiver, etc.).
Time-consuming and uncertain process
The selection process is competitive and can be time-consuming. There is extensive paperwork as well as in-depth medical, physical and psychological testing. This process adds demands to already busy lives. Plus, your selection for a mission is not guaranteed.
Most missions are in countries with different living conditions than in Canada. You need to prepare to live and work in harsh and difficult conditions.
A typical peace operation takes place in a failed or fragile state. Serving on a mission entails risks to your health and safety. International Peace Operations and host agencies try to reduce risks for deployed officers. Yet, the very nature of an international peace mission means exposure to higher risk. Risks on a peace mission are very different than risks here at home. We provide special allowances because of exposure to these risks. You and your loved ones must prepare to deal with that increased risk – and the worry this might cause.
Serving on a peace operation is completely voluntary. Unlike soldiers, police officers have no mandatory deployment obligations. You can choose to end your mission early if needed.
Is this a good time in your policing career to be away from your current job for a year? Are you risking missing a promotion for a job you were hoping to get? In some organizations, when you return you may not land in the same position as before.
Do you have health conditions that could flare-up in mission? What about emotions related to these health concerns?
Do you have small children? For many, your children's age can be a big factor in deciding if this is the time for a year-long absence.
Have there been recent disruptions in your family's life, such as a move or a separation? Are your children functioning well or are they showing signs of behavioral problems? A long family separation will likely add more stress, making existing problems worse.
Are you considering potential financial benefits in your decision-making process? Of course, there are some financial benefits to mission service. It would be naïve to think that they do not play a role in the decision. If financial benefits are your primary motivation, a mission will not likely be for you.
Is this a good time to make this commitment? Are your relationships strong enough to withstand such a separation without undue stress? Mission veterans will tell you that whatever problem was there before you left will be worse when you return.
Our study also found the reverse to be true. If your relationships were strong at the outset, they'll be stronger when you return. This is especially true if you were good at managing stress while in mission.
Starting the discussion: what's in it for the family?
Talk openly with your family. Weigh the pros and cons of mission participation. Sharing excitement, fear, anxiety and relief will enhance coping more than you know. It may be the most meaningful thing you can all do to prepare for the mission.
Once you've explored all these questions and the possible answers, you and your family should be in a better position to make an informed decision. It will help manage your family's expectations.
When you're deploying or returning from a mission, you'll be able to access resources and services.
Recruitment, screening and selection
- Plans and manages the recruitment, selection and screening processes
- Helps the deployment of skilled police personnel to international peacekeeping and training missions
- Equips those selected to deploy with information, skills and tools
- These tools help with personal and professional integration into demanding environments
Critical incident management
- Manages and maintains critical incident planning when responding to critical incidents during missions
Specialized equipment deployment support
- Provides services ensuring all deployed personnel receive logistical support and equipment that:
- is essential and specific to the length and region of deployment
- respective of operations
- meets standard-of-care requirements
Health and wellness
- Offers the highest level of care to employees throughout the deployment cycle:
- pre-deployment medical and psychological assessments
- recommendation for deployment candidates
- support related to health and psychological wellness during mission
- post-mission follow-ups and information on reintegration for personnel and their families
Finance and benefits
- The RCMP provides help to deploying officers by offering:
- calculation of in-mission allowances and pre-deployment expenses
- quality assurance
- research support
Mission Reintegration Guide
The Mission Reintegration Guide outlines different areas that your return may affect, such as:
- your homecoming
- communicating about your experiences
- stress management
- Date modified: