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Canadian vice-chief of defence staff says recruitment, culture change are priorities


A candidate on the Patrol Pathfinder course awaits troops to approach for helicopter insertion in Isle-aux-Coudres, Qc, on September 10, 2021. Photo: MCpl Genevieve Lapointe, Canadian Forces Combat Camera, Canadian Armed Forces Photo

The vice-chief of Canada’s defence staff says the Armed Forces are embarking on a digital recruitment drive to build up numbers.

Lieutenant-general Frances Allen told an international defence conference in Ottawa that a priority was to build back Armed Forces capacity and to do that it was addressing “many flaws” with the recruiting process.

She says recruitment will be more digitally based and designed to quickly engage with people who have expressed an interest in the Armed Forces.

She says the recruitment drive will focus on the skills Canada’s Armed Forces need, and retaining existing members is also important.

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Allen says a culture change is ongoing, which will allow people to “be their best” without feeling they are “an outsider” or “an other.”

Gen. Wayne Eyre, chief of the defence staff, will speak later today at the Conference of Defence Associations Institute event, as will Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, Belarus’s exiled opposition leader.

Tsikhanouskaya claimed a first-round victory over Alexander Lukashenko in the 2020 Belarusian presidential election after she stood in the place of her husband, who had been detained.

She disputed the eventual election of Lukashenko, who is a close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin. He has allowed Belarus to be a staging post for Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, letting Russian troops amass along the border.

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