More than half of recent applications to join the military came from permanent residents: DND

Will be interesting to see the percentage who are accepted (the Canadian Forces have a weak record on diversity despite efforts):

More than half of the applications received this past week from people looking to join the Canadian military — nearly 700 — came from permanent residents, the Department of National Defence says.

Since the beginning of November, 2,670 newly arrived immigrants have volunteered to serve in the Canadian Armed Forces. It may be a sign that a long-term trend of newcomers shying away from the military is finally coming to an end.

On Dec. 5, the federal government lifted the ban on permanent residents joining the military, following the example set by allies who have long held the door open for immigrants.

“That’s a great start,” the country’s top military commander, Gen. Wayne Eyre, told CBC News in a year-end interview.

In the weeks leading up to the change, inquiries from permanent residents about military service made up slightly less than a third of the total. Since the announcement on Monday, that share has increased to 50 per cent — or 680 applications between December 5 and 8.

The figures, although preliminary, likely come as a bit of a relief to Eyre, who has warned for several months that the military is facing a critical shortfall in personnel.

It’s estimated that the Armed Forces is down roughly 8,000 to 10,000 people from its assigned strength of 71,500 regular forces personnel and 30,000 reserves.

The military had a plan to boost recruitment of soldiers, sailors and aircrew before COVID-19 hit, but attrition, the fallout from the sexual misconduct scandal and the pandemic lockdowns drove that plan off the rails.

The Armed Forces has received more than 8,200 applications since early November. Until the individuals are enrolled, however, they’re not considered recruited — and that has Eyre concerned.

Source: More than half of recent applications to join the military came from permanent residents: DND

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

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