Canadian Rangers and Junior Canadian Rangers

What are the Canadian Rangers?

The Canadian Rangers1 are a sub-component of the Reserve Force within the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF).  They provide “…a CAF presence in those sparsely settled northern, coastal and isolated areas of Canada which cannot conveniently or economically be covered by other elements of the CAF.”2

Who are the Canadian Rangers?

Legal residents of Canada who are 18 years of age or older are eligible to join the Canadian Rangers. They must also meet the following criteria:3

Canadian Rangers gender infographic
  • be physically and mentally capable of carrying out Canadian Rangers’ duties;
  • must not have been convicted of a serious offence under the Criminal Code of Canada for which a pardon has not been granted, including firearms offences, violent crimes, drug-related offences, and other offences at the discretion of the Canadian Ranger Instructor;
  • must not be a member of any other sub-component of the Canadian Armed Forces or another national military or police branch (Royal Canadian Military Police, Coast Guard); and
  • must be knowledgeable and personally equipped to survive and efficiently operate on the land.

As of April 30, 2016, there were 4,985 Canadian Rangers on strength with the CAF.4 They are made up of 3,929 male members (79%) and 1,056 female members (21%).

Which isolated areas of Canada do they cover?

The Canadian Rangers are divided into five Canadian Ranger Patrol Groups (CPRGs).5 Each CRPG has its own headquarters and a staff that is responsible for overseeing a group of patrols consisting of Canadian Rangers and Junior Canadian Rangers each responsible to cover their own distinct area. As noted below, CPRGs are located in all provinces and territories except for Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.

Canadian Ranger region infographic

Canadian Ranger Patrol Groups

Alternative Text Available

 

1st Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region Northwest Territories, Yukon, Nunavut
Number of Patrols 60
Number of Rangers

1,725

 

2nd Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region Quebec
Number of Patrols 25
Number of Rangers 752

 

3rd Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region Ontario
Number of Patrols 20
Number of Rangers 591

 

4th Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba
Number of Patrols 43
Number of Rangers 988

 

5th Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region Newfoundland and Labrador
Number of Patrols 32
Number of Rangers 929

 

What kinds of tasks are they assigned?

As members of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), here are some examples of tasks that are assigned to the Canadian Rangers:6

  • Conduct and provide support to sovereignty operations such as reporting suspicious and unusual activities and collecting local information of military significance;
  • Conduct and provide assistance to CAF domestic operations such as providing local knowledge and expertise (i.e. advice and guides) or participating in search and rescue operations; and
  • Maintain a CAF presence in the local community through instruction, mentoring and supervision of youth in the Junior Canadian Rangers Program.

What kind of training are they involved in?

New members of the Canadian Rangers undergo ten days of orientation training.7  Canadian Ranger training is flexible and may vary from patrol to patrol, or from one area of the country to another. Common areas of training include:

  • Flood or fire evacuation planning;
  • Sovereignty patrols of Canada’s remote coastal areas;
  • Major air disaster assistance;
  • Self-sufficiency and leadership; andTraditional skills.

How are they getting paid?8

Funding for the Canadian Rangers is based upon 12 days annual pay in support of training and conducting patrols. Additionally, they are compensated for any other official CAF tasking. They will also receive reimbursement for the wear and tear on their personal vehicles and personal equipment when they are used in support of official Canadian Ranger activities.

Junior Canadian Ranger gender infographic

What is the Junior Canadian Rangers’9 Program?

The Junior Canadian Rangers is a youth program led by the Department of National Defence (DND). The DND provides the structure, personnel and uniforms. Training expertise, supervision, funding and training aides come from the Canadian Armed Forces.10 Junior Canadian Rangers are not members of the CAF.

The program is open to all youth aged 12 to 18 years old living in remote and isolated communities of Canada. It promotes traditional cultures and lifestyles in communities of the North.

The Junior Canadian Rangers form part of a patrol when the program exists in their community.11 In January 2015, there were 4,421 youth participating in over 141 patrols.12

Junior Canadian Ranger region infographic

Junior Canadian Ranger Patrol Groups

Alternative Text Available

 

1st Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region Northwest Territories, Yukon, Nunavut
Number of Patrols 41
Number of Rangers

1,548

 

2nd Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region Quebec
Number of Patrols 35
Number of Rangers 760

 

3rd Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region Ontario
Number of Patrols 20
Number of Rangers 774

 

4th Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba
Number of Patrols 30
Number of Rangers 911

 

5th Canadian Ranger Patrol Group 
Region Newfoundland and Labrador
Number of Patrols 15
Number of Rangers 428

 

What types of activities are Junior Canadian Rangers involved in?

Under the supervision of qualified Canadian Rangers, adult volunteers and other members of the Canadian Armed Forces, Junior Canadian Rangers participate in a variety of activities, including those that focus on three important areas of training:13

Junior Canadian Ranger ranger skill

Ranger Skills: where they learn the important role their instructors serve in the Canadian Armed Forces and become acquainted with Ranger skills, including firearms safety, navigation and camping skills.

Junior Canadian Ranger traditional skill

Traditional Skills: where Elders and adults are involved in teaching traditional skills such as spiritual ceremonies, local language, traditional music and dance, hunting, fishing and traditional cooing.

Junior Canadian Ranger life skill

Life Skills: where they will learn about citizenship, staying in school, good nutrition, and drug and alcohol abuse awareness. As part of the Department of National Defence’s commitment to providing a safe learning environment, the Preventing Harassment and Abuse through Successful Education (PHASE) Program is taught to the Junior Canadian Rangers.

Junior Canadian Rangers also have the opportunity to participate in summer camps, regularly scheduled trips “out to the land” which allow them to put their lessons and skills into practice, in addition to visiting different parts of the country, to take part in activities such as the National Marksmanship Championship or National events such as Remembrance Day parades.14

Where can I find more information?

Additional information on the Canadian Rangers and Junior Canadian Rangers can be found at the following websites: Canadian Rangers, Junior Canadian Rangers.

The Office of the Ombudsman for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Forces is also available to assist.

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