About the SMRC

The SMRC Response

We listen without judgement
We offer compassion
We respect confidentiality
We explain your options
We help you access services
We support your choices

SMRC counselling
at your service

You can call us any time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

North America toll-free:
1-844-750-1648 

National Capital Region, collect from anywhere, and via Iridium satellite:
613-996-3900

Alternate and international phone numbers

Email: DND.SMRC-CIIS.MDN@forces.gc.ca

The Sexual Misconduct Response Centre, the CAF and Operation HONOUR

The Sexual Misconduct Response Centre (SMRC) is a recognized centre of expertise that provides confidential 24/7 support services to Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members who are and/or have been affected by sexual misconduct. SMRC counsellors are available to provide supportive counseling and information on options available to them. Upon request, they can also facilitate access to CAF and civilian resources, which may include mental and physical health services, counseling, law enforcement services, spiritual support, and assistance with administrative matters.

Since August 2019, CAF members can also decide to opt into the Response & Support Coordination program where counsellors provide CAF members who have experienced sexual misconduct with an assigned and dedicated coordinator to offer on-going support and assistance to navigate systems and processes. 

Communication between members and SMRC counsellors is confidential and can be anonymous. SMRC also provides support and advice to leaders and others who support affected members.

The SMRC operates within the Department of National Defence and reports directly to the Deputy Minister outside and independent of the CAF chain of command.

As part of its Mandate, the SMRC also provides expert advice, guidance, and recommendations to the CAF Directorate Professional Military Conduct – Operation HONOUR (DPMC-OpH) on all matters related to sexual misconduct. SMRC is responsible for the monitoring of the outcomes of the implementation of Operation HONOUR. To coordinate the efforts of DPMC-OpH and SMRC, the two organizations have established an Operating Agreement Concerning Expert Advice and Support Services for the CAF Response to Sexual Misconduct.

Service delivery: supportive counselling

The SMRC’s core activity is providing supportive counselling to CAF members. The Centre applies several principles of excellence in service delivery such as: trained counsellors to assist callers; quick response 24/7; and convenient worldwide access by telephone.

The Centre’s counsellors support members as they:

  • listen without judgement, explore and discuss each unique situation
  • work together so the member can make well-informed choices that suit their needs and situation
  • recognize, respect and work to understand the member’s needs
  • take into account the member’s feelings, needs, worries and fears
  • devote unlimited time to each call
  • work with each member in their official language of choice
  • assist members in expressing themselves
  • uphold the member’s rights to privacy and confidentiality
  • describe the options available to the member
  • apply their knowledge of the CAF and of inappropriate sexual misbehaviour
  • explain what the Centre does, can do and cannot do, and when a member requests it, facilitate access or referral to another organization that can meet their needs.

Visit Sexual Misconduct Response Centre for more information.

Response & Support Coordination

In August 2019, the SMRC launched the first phase of its new Response and Support Coordination (RSC) Program. The program addresses critical gaps in the system and ensures you’re provided with services that are consistent with best practices. CAF members who have experienced sexual misconduct will be assigned a dedicated coordinator who will offer ongoing support and assistance until you no longer require their services. You may also withdraw your consent or transition to civilian services.

In this program, SMRC coordinators help members navigate systems and processes by providing:

  • support
  • information and referrals
  • case coordination
  • advocacy
  • accompaniment
  • assistance with workplace arrangements
  • other practical assistance

The program complements existing services available through the SMRC and the CAF.

The implementation of this program addresses key recommendations made in the External Review Authority’s Report on Sexual Misconductandthe Office of the Auditor General Report on Inappropriate Sexual Behaviour – CAF. It also reaffirms the SMRC’s priority of ensuring that military members are well supported as outlined in Strong Secure and Engaged: Canada’s Defence Policy.

Confidentiality and privacy

SMRC counsellors collect only information that is consistent with the service they provide and with Canada’s Privacy Act. This information is stored in a secure Government of Canada database. The SMRC uses the data to analyze trends, identify systemic issues, for planning and development, and to ensure continuity of service.

People who speak with an SMRC counsellor are not required to identify themselves, provide their rank or say where they work or live. The counsellors do not ask for this information. CAF members are in control of the information they provide. They can also remain anonymous.

All personal information that SMRC counsellors receive from callers is protected by Canada’s Privacy Act. The Act does, however, provide for exceptions under “Protection of Personal Information.” Two reasons for disclosure of personal information may occur are:

  • when there is reason to believe that a person poses a risk to their own safety or the safety of others; and
  • to comply with a subpoena, warrant or court order.

Callers may find that they need more in-depth information about the CAF than the SMRC counsellor is in a position to provide. To meet this need, the SMRC has access to a Military Liaison Team that consists of a Military Police Liaison Officer (MPLO), a Special Military Advisor (SMA), and a Military Liaison Officer (MLO), all of whom are CAF members dedicated to the work of the SMRC. This team has extensive up-to-date knowledge of the CAF, its organizations and processes. As with the SMRC counsellors, members of this team are not required to know a caller’s name, rank or location.

When a caller opts to talk with a member of the Military Liaison Team, the SMRC counsellor can facilitate contact with or make a referral to one of them. This is done in confidence, without passing on information about the caller.

An MPLO is an officer of the Military Police who can help when a person needs sound knowledge about lodging complaints and the investigative process. If a person chooses to make a formal complaint, then, and only then does an MPLO need personal information about the person. An MPLO can also facilitate callers’ access to the Canadian Forces National Investigative Service.

Networks

With the consent of the member who is calling in, the SMRC counsellor can facilitate the member’s contact with other CAF organizations such as Canadian Forces Health Services, Canadian Forces Chaplains and other organizations such as Veterans Affairs Canada.

The SMRC is also acquainted with many local and regional civilian organizations that provide services. These organizations include regional sexual assault centres, rape crisis centres, emergency shelter services, and hospitals that perform sexual assault examinations.

External Advisory Council

The External Advisory Council (EAC) provides independent and impartial third-party advice to enhance the Department’s and the Canadian Armed Forces’ ability to prevent and address sexual misconduct in the Forces. The Executive Director of the SMRC and the Director General of the Canadian Armed Forces Strategic Response Team on Sexual Misconduct also sit on the counsel.

For more information, consult: members’ Biographies, meeting Agendas and Records of Decision.

Statistics and reports

Annual report 2018-2019

Annual report 2017-2018

Annual report 2016-2017

Sexual Misconduct Response Centre - Status Report - 1 January - 30 June, 2016

Other CAF information on harmful and inappropriate sexual behaviour can be found at Operation HONOUR.

Connect with us

If you do not know how to contact someone at the SMRC for executive, administrative or other matters, call 613-996-3900, 8 am to 5 pm Eastern Time, or email DND.SMRC-CIIS.MDN@forces.gc.ca.

If you want the SMRC to speak to your unit or organization or participate in an event, please send your request to the SMRC.

Printed material: individual CAF members, bases, wings, units, and other organizations can acquire SMRC posters, cards and bookmarks by contacting the SMRC.

Note: Media enquires are to be directed to the Media Liaison Office of the Department of National Defence.

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