Blue Line

RCMP union seeks boost to cadet training allowance to compete with other forces

December 22, 2023  By The Canadian Press

Dec. 22, 2023, Ottawa, Ont. – The union representing rank-and-file Mounties has asked the federal government for $24 million annually to boost the RCMP cadet training allowance to help attract the best recruits.

The RCMP must appropriately compensate cadets while they attend training to remain competitive with other forces, the National Police Federation says. It hopes to see increased funding in the federal budget expected next spring.

The federation notes cadets are not considered RCMP employees until they have completed their 26-week training at Depot in Regina, and therefore are not covered by a collective agreement.

During this period, cadets receive an allowance of $525 per week, and the RCMP covers the cost of accommodation, meals, uniforms, training courses, insurance and limited travel.


The federation says that since 2008, the $525 allowance has not changed or been adjusted to match inflation, meaning cadets are making less than what minimum-wage workers earn in most provinces.

The RCMP said it welcomes the federation’s proposal for a higher allowance. Commissioner Michael Duheme and the federation are “continuing discussions to examine options,” the force said in a statement.

“We are looking at ways to ensure cadets receive competitive and meaningful compensation while in training at Depot.”

Recruits who attend training in most provincial and municipal police services are salaried employees from the first day of training, the federation says in a background document on the issue.

“The current allowance fails to consider the needs of RCMP cadets with financial responsibilities and obligations such as supporting their families, mortgages, and student loans,” the backgrounder says. “Attending Depot is both mentally and physically demanding: cadets should not have to bear an additional financial burden while undertaking training.”

The federation does not represent cadets, only those who graduate and join the force, noted its president, Brian Sauve. As a result, the union can’t formally bargain on behalf of the cadets.

“So we have to do it outside of bargaining through our lobbying efforts, through our federal budget submissions and such,” Sauve said.

He said the federation has spoken to several MPs and senators about the proposal and “there’s a lot of cross party support for this.”

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