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Military's diversity, inclusion efforts plagued by shortcomings: internal review

Good2Golf

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Perhaps the problem lays in the fact many in any demographic not just minorities do not see the CAF as a viable career option
Is ‘diversity-supportive conscription’ a COA? Or perhaps a ‘diversity signing bonus?’ 🤔
 

mariomike

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Perhaps the problem lays in the fact many in any demographic not just minorities do not see the CAF as a viable career option
I'm no Recruiter. Just another guy with an opinion. So, take this for what it's worth.

But, the Civil Service and the army have always provided a secure means of making a living. So, there's that.

Also, in addition to the Legion and unit associations, maybe , or maybe not, fraternal organizations might spark some community interest?

They have been around for decades in emergency services.
 

daftandbarmy

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Perhaps the problem lays in the fact many in any demographic not just minorities do not see the CAF as a viable career option

Our recruiting efforts are largely invisible to the civilian marketplace, IMHO as a rsult of applying marketing strategies familiar to those operating 20, 30 or even 40 years ago.

As a result, I don't know if you can draw any firm conclusions as to who is, or is not, attracted to the CAF.
 

lenaitch

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Is ‘diversity-supportive conscription’ a COA? Or perhaps a ‘diversity signing bonus?’ 🤔

No including the signing bonuses but didn't the US do that with conscription during the Viet Nam war? Lots of urban poor and POC who didn't have the capacity to secure a deferment.

Targeting diversity recruiting likely focuses on urban populations and bypasses the rural, which I think historically has been a rich recruiting base.
 

Colin Parkinson

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Part of the issue with targeting immigrants is they often have bad or low opinions of militaries based on their experiences in their old countries. In some countries, the military is seen as corrupt, brutal and only for the low class and uneducated. Most immigrants see economic success as the way forward and devote their energies there. They don't see how a military career either full or part time will benefit them or their children.

Even in the Public Service here in Vancouver, despite a large Persian population, you rarely see any Persian people working for government, they don't see it as a way to get rich. i am also seeing this play out for our Navy League Corp and trying to find a way to massage our messaging for a predominantly Persian/Mainland Chinese immigrant demographic.
 

Good2Golf

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No including the signing bonuses but didn't the US do that with conscription during the Viet Nam war? Lots of urban poor and POC who didn't have the capacity to secure a deferment.

Targeting diversity recruiting likely focuses on urban populations and bypasses the rural, which I think historically has been a rich recruiting base.
My initial comments were somewhat tongue in cheek, but could even a targeted recruiting bounty or equivalent achieve the desired/stated targets. As well, what is the intended end-state based on. Should the diversity and gender composition reflect that of Canadian society now, or as it will appear in the future?

Recruiting efforts are only one aspect (induction) of HR composition; does there need to be targeted retention as well? Maybe if the targeted composition is important enough, the government needs to consider some kind of Charter-exempt gender/minority retention bonus to entice such groups to stay once in?

Thinking outside the box, because I honestly don’t think however flashy requiring ads are, will there be the desired uptake and retention...and...certainly not with today’s CAY issue of poorly behaving older, Caucasian males.

Regards
G2G
 

Colin Parkinson

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Another problem is that Ottawa will want a "nationally consistent" messaging, while the pathway to success, requires regionally and community level marketing. Have marketers in each major recruiting centre in each Province that have a list of core values and needs and a list of verbotten phrases, then let them hire local firms to target specific groups and communities.
 

mariomike

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Targeting diversity recruiting likely focuses on urban populations and bypasses the rural, which I think historically has been a rich recruiting base.
You may be on to something there.

5 pages.

Also, from the National Post back in 2009,

"Who fights for Canada? Young white men, that's who fights," says Douglas Bland, chairman of Queen's University's defence studies program.



Graeme Hamilton, National Post
Published: Saturday, November 07, 2009
2197536.bin

Chris Schwarz, Canwest News Service

"Who fights for Canada? Young white men, that's who fights," says Douglas Bland, chairman of Queen's University's defence studies program.

For decades, Remembrance Day was about honouring the ever more distant memory of Canadians killed in the two world wars and in Korea. Then in 2002 in Afghanistan, the country suffered its first combat casualties in nearly half a century, the beginning of a mounting toll that reached 133 last week. Canada has evolved considerably since the Korean armistice of 1953, becoming an overwhelmingly urban and increasingly multicultural society. But while the face of Canada has changed, the faces of its war dead largely have not.
The names, photos and hometowns of those who have died in Afghanistan provide a portrait of the Canadian solider of the 21st century, and in some ways he is not all that different from his 20th-century predecessor. "Who fights for Canada? Young white men, that's who fights," Douglas Bland, chairman of Queen's University's defence studies program, puts it bluntly. There are obviously exceptions to his generalization: three women are among the Canadian dead, as are six members of visible minority groups. But the great majority of casualties are white men between the ages of 20 and 39. They are more likely to have grown up in small towns than in major cities. And relative to its population, Atlantic Canada has suffered the heaviest losses.

The numbers suggest that significant pockets of the country are content to leave military service -- and the danger it entails -- to others. They also raise questions about the Canadian Forces' ability to confront demographic change that is draining its traditional recruitment pool. With each census, Canada's population becomes more concentrated in its major metropolises. In 2006, the six metropolitan areas with populations of over one million people -- Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa-Gatineau, Calgary and Edmonton -- accounted for 45% of the total population. But of the 133 Afghanistan dead, 26 -- or 20% --come from those cities.
The metro Toronto census area, which encompasses surrounding suburbs and makes up nearly one-sixth of the Canadian population, has lost four soldiers, 3% of total casualties. Truro, N.S., with a population of 12,000, has lost as many of its men. Metropolitan Montreal and Calgary have seen eight and six soldiers killed, respectively, while just one has come from the Vancouver area.
The four Atlantic provinces, with 7% of the national population, account for 23% of the dead. Saskatchewan's eight fallen soldiers represent double its share of the population.

"The casualties do tell us something important about the composition of our force," says Christian Leuprecht, a professor at the Royal Military College who is currently a visiting professor of Canadian Studies at Yale University. "There is a considerable over-representation from rural areas, and there has traditionally been over-representation from Atlantic Canada. That's partially a function of how virtually all militaries recruit. They tend to recruit from lower socio-economic strata ... and from areas that economically don't do as well. In those areas the military is an attractive employer and, interestingly, an institution for social mobility within a society." Figures provided by the Department of National Defence show that, with a few exceptions, a province's share of the Afghanistan fatalities reflects its share of overall enrolment in the regular forces.
In the post-Charter of Rights era, the army has increased efforts to recruit visible minorities, aboriginals and women. But a 2006 report by Canada's auditor-general found that recruitment among the three groups had fallen well below National Defence targets. According to the latest numbers from the army, 17% of Canadian Forces personnel are women. Visible minorities make up 3.4% of the Forces, compared with 16% of the overall population, and aboriginals are 2.6%, compared with 3.8% of the population. One area where the Forces are becoming more representative of the general population is age, a fact reflected in the Afghanistan casualties.
The Silver Cross mother who saw her young son head off to war and never return has been an icon of Remembrance Day since 1950.
Increasingly the mothers are joined today by widows and grieving children; the military even changed its regulations last year to allow soldiers to designate up to three people, including their children, to receive the medal. "The Canadian Forces are old compared to most militaries," says Alan Okros, a professor of leadership at Canadian Forces College in Toronto. The median age of those killed in Afghanistan is 26, but 51 of them were 30 or older, and 11 were 40 or older. (The median age among all Forces personnel is 33.) The ages of the dead "set this mission apart from any other mission," Mr. Leuprecht says.

Education levels are also on the rise among Canadian Forces personnel, a reflection of the increasingly technical nature of modern warfare, a 2008 Statistics Canada report found. In 1988, 19% of regular force personnel had a post-secondary degree or diploma while 26% had not finished high school. By 2002, almost half of the regular forces had a post-secondary degree or diploma and just 7% had failed to finish high school. "I'm competing head to head with all the major tech corporations in the world really, but in Canada specifically, and we're all seeking the same education demographic," says Commodore Daniel MacKeigan, commandant of the Canadian Forces Recruiting Group.
An even greater recruitment challenge is the decline of the group that has traditionally provided the bulk of members --fit, young, rural, white males. Growth in the 18-29 age bracket of Canadians is found among the recent immigrant and aboriginal populations where the Canadian Forces have had trouble making inroads. A 2008 National Defence report to gauge aboriginal people's views of enlisting found opposition to the role of increasingly engaging in combat. There were also fears of culture shock and being a minority within the armed forces. Research in Canada's Chinese and South Asian communities has found that young people rely heavily on their parents and the larger community for approval, and military service is not considered a desirable career.

"In cultural communities, there is pressure for children to become professionals, which means the military hasn't managed to position itself as a profession on a par with others," Mr. Leuprecht says. A 2007 editorial in the Asian Pacific Post, a British Columbia newspaper, criticized the community's failure to enlist. "Our strength as new Canadians must not only be measured in economic terms," it said. "We must permeate and be present in all aspects of Canada. That includes the Canadian Forces."
Another obstacle to recruitment is that military bases are no longer found in big cities. People are more likely to consider a military career if they come from a military family or know someone in the Forces.

"In downtown Toronto, where you don't see anybody [in uniform], there is no connection," Mr. Bland says. "Nobody knows anything about the armed forces." Being stationed at a remote base is unappealing to people accustomed to a vibrant city, and the sentiment is particularly pronounced among new arrivals to Canada, says Mr. Okros, who worked on recruiting diversity before he retired from the Forces in 2004. "There's a real reluctance in these close-knit communities to have sons and daughters leave Toronto and go to northern Alberta," he says.
CommodoreMacKeigan says he wants the Forces to more accurately reflect the Canadian population, but there is a lag of several generations between immigrants' arrival in Canada and possible interest in a military career. "Only after people have got established and can sort of breathe easily, then the youth start looking around for other career options," he says.
Mr. Leuprecht notes that the aversion to military service is not confined to recent immigrants; he sees it among university students who are all for a military intervention in Darfur, as long as they're not called upon to serve.

"Why is there this disjuncture, and should we be having these types of expeditionary operations when a good chunk of Canadian society, not just immigrants, would never themselves consider shouldering that sort of burden?" he asks.
Mr. Bland, a retired army lieutenant colonel, says the notion of military service as a part of citizenship, so widespread among Canadians in the two world wars, has largely disappeared. He faults successive federal governments for failing to mobilize Canadians around the idea that the country is at war.
"The army's at war," he says, "and Canada's at peace."
 

daftandbarmy

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You may be on to something there.

5 pages.

Also, from the National Post back in 2009,

"Who fights for Canada? Young white men, that's who fights," says Douglas Bland, chairman of Queen's University's defence studies program.



Graeme Hamilton, National Post
Published: Saturday, November 07, 2009
2197536.bin

Chris Schwarz, Canwest News Service

"Who fights for Canada? Young white men, that's who fights," says Douglas Bland, chairman of Queen's University's defence studies program.


"Why is there this disjuncture, and should we be having these types of expeditionary operations when a good chunk of Canadian society, not just immigrants, would never themselves consider shouldering that sort of burden?" he asks.
Mr. Bland, a retired army lieutenant colonel, says the notion of military service as a part of citizenship, so widespread among Canadians in the two world wars, has largely disappeared. He faults successive federal governments for failing to mobilize Canadians around the idea that the country is at war.
"The army's at war," he says, "and Canada's at peace."

Part of the issue is that all of our recruiting efforts are quota based, so the tendency is to go 'back to the same well' again, and again, using the same messaging and tools that worked half a century ago when we had the largest population of young people in history (Baby Boomers) and recruiting was the equivalent of shooting fish in a barrel.

We need to get good at marketing people under 25 years of age, for example:

27 Expert Tips for Marketing to Millennials​

Here's how to reach the largest living generation.​


As the largest living generation, Millennials are a demographic every brand wants to charm. But the first trick in garnering their loyalty involves getting their attention and keeping it -- no small feat considering these younger consumers aren't as likely as Gen-Xers and Boomers to respond to traditional advertising or marketing tactics. Take some advice from more than two dozen marketing experts and executives who say they've found the secrets to engaging with Millennials. Here are their words on how to market to people younger than 35.

 

OldSolduer

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One of my co workers told me she had thought of joining the CAF but her family was dead set against it. Her family's origins are in the Phillipines (sorry if I messed up the spelling) and they do not trust any military - they remember Marcos and others who use their armed forces to subjugate the population.
So this is probably one reason the CAF is not as diverse as people would like it to be.

Honestly its a laudable goal but only if quality people apply.
 

Navy_Pete

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Throw it out there that Millenials are now 40; this article is an entire generation behind. Also, blanket plans based on some kind of preconception of what works for a whole generation of people isn't working now, so maybe that's not the best approach, and if we have to start doing dog and pony shows for 'influencers' I will start my retirement slump a decade early and with enthusiasm.
 

mariomike

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One of my co workers told me she had thought of joining the CAF but her family was dead set against it.
25 pages of tips she can use to get her family on board.

Her family's origins are in the Phillipines (sorry if I messed up the spelling) and they do not trust any military - they remember Marcos and others who use their armed forces to subjugate the population.
Assuming she works in a jail over here? From what little I have read about them back in the old country, they don't sound like health clubs.
 

FJAG

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So here's an idea. Build several bases close to an urban centre like Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Vancouver with facilities for training simulators and sufficient low cost housing for an entire battalion or regiment. Keep the actual equipment at super training bases such as Wainwright and Gagetown with a skeleton maintenance staff around the year. Transport (bus, fly, whatever) the battalion etc to the training base several times a year for full-scale exercises. Create similar reserve battalions in the same area who use the sim equipment on weekends and during the summer and do an annual exercise with the real stuff late summer.

Add to that a general covenant that keeps people within that battalion to career progress as long as they want and thus affording their spouses stable employment opportunities and for everyone to stay near their families.

Simulation systems have become quite advanced and could probably meet the vast majority of all individual training needs and even many collective training ones.

A long-term investment in real estate at the level of a 4-500 single and multiple unit family home sub division near an urban centre is not out of the question, will only appreciate in value and will become self sustaining based on rents even if modest.

:unsure:
 

daftandbarmy

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Throw it out there that Millenials are now 40; this article is an entire generation behind. Also, blanket plans based on some kind of preconception of what works for a whole generation of people isn't working now, so maybe that's not the best approach, and if we have to start doing dog and pony shows for 'influencers' I will start my retirement slump a decade early and with enthusiasm.

Well, if your idea of great marketing is mall displays, high school visits and mispelled/ out of date brochures and posters, like back in 1980 when I was the recruiting officer for my unit (backed up by an awful/ non-existent virtual media presence) then we're killin' it.
 

FJAG

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My initial comments were somewhat tongue in cheek, but could even a targeted recruiting bounty or equivalent achieve the desired/stated targets.
My 44 year military career started because a high school stage crew friend of mine got a ten dollar bounty for bringing me down to the armouries.

For those who weren't there in the sixties, $10 bucks bought you sixty stubbies of beer.

😁
 

dimsum

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So here's an idea. Build several bases close to an urban centre like Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Vancouver with facilities for training simulators and sufficient low cost housing for an entire battalion or regiment. Keep the actual equipment at super training bases such as Wainwright and Gagetown with a skeleton maintenance staff around the year. Transport (bus, fly, whatever) the battalion etc to the training base several times a year for full-scale exercises. Create similar reserve battalions in the same area who use the sim equipment on weekends and during the summer and do an annual exercise with the real stuff late summer.
So basically the Australian model, but they also have the real equipment there (and minus the low-cost housing).
 

mariomike

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My 44 year military career started because a high school stage crew friend of mine got a ten dollar bounty for bringing me down to the armouries.
For those who weren't there in the sixties, $10 bucks bought you sixty stubbies of beer.

😁

That would be five "Scarborough suitcases". ( That's the 12-pack on top, with the convenient suitcase handle. )

With change left over for cigarettes. Trying to remember how much a carton cost back then, as we usually got ours from vending machines.




 

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Kilted

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So here's an idea. Build several bases close to an urban centre like Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Vancouver with facilities for training simulators and sufficient low cost housing for an entire battalion or regiment. Keep the actual equipment at super training bases such as Wainwright and Gagetown with a skeleton maintenance staff around the year. Transport (bus, fly, whatever) the battalion etc to the training base several times a year for full-scale exercises. Create similar reserve battalions in the same area who use the sim equipment on weekends and during the summer and do an annual exercise with the real stuff late summer.

Add to that a general covenant that keeps people within that battalion to career progress as long as they want and thus affording their spouses stable employment opportunities and for everyone to stay near their families.

Simulation systems have become quite advanced and could probably meet the vast majority of all individual training needs and even many collective training ones.

A long-term investment in real estate at the level of a 4-500 single and multiple unit family home sub division near an urban centre is not out of the question, will only appreciate in value and will become self sustaining based on rents even if modest.

:unsure:
I feel like bases were intentionally put out of the way to try and keep the troops out of trouble, or at least away from the public eye when they do get into trouble.
 

dapaterson

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Base location and design integrates, in part, an assumption that remote locations with all base functions conveniently dispersed ensures that even if Shilo is hit with a Soviet nuclear weapon, at least clothing stores will survive.
 
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