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Military Police Officer

OFFICER | Full Time, Part Time

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As a member of the military, Military Police Officers lead teams of Military Police members in enforcing laws and regulations on Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) establishments in Canada and abroad. They serve the entire CAF community including Regular and Reserve Force members, civilian employees, cadets and family members.

Military Police Officers provide leadership and professional direction to Military Police members, and manage available resources and equipment. They enforce discipline, control traffic, handle prisoners of war, detainees and refugees, and manage the collection, collation, analysis and dissemination of criminal intelligence.

The primary responsibilities of a Military Police Officer are to:

  • Manage military police patrols
  • Administer police operations
  • Supervise crime scene management
  • Conduct investigations and interviews
  • Manage investigations
  • Administer police programs
  • Administer security programs
  • Provide police and security advice to senior authorities 

Work environment

All Canadian citizens are entitled to the same rights, privileges and protection under Canadian law, and Military Police Officers are qualified to provide these services to the same standard as every other Canadian police service. Military Police Officers work routinely within the civilian criminal and military justice systems, and are recognised as peace officers in the Criminal Code of Canada. With over 1,250 full-time members, they form one of the largest police forces in Canada.

Military Police Officers provide around-the-clock service to the military community in Canada or around the world, including areas of armed conflict or natural disaster. The majority of a Military Police Officer's work will be working indoors in an office setting, but working conditions will vary depending on the nature and the location of the services being provided.

If you chose a career in the Regular Force, upon completion of all required training, you will be assigned to your first base. While there is some flexibility with regards to postings (relocations), accommodations can’t always be made, and therefore, you can likely expect to move at some point in your career. However, if you decide to join the Primary Reserve Force, you will do so through a specific Reserve unit. Outside of training, your chosen Reserve unit will be your workplace on a part time basis, and you will not be obligated to relocate to a different base. As part of the Primary Reserve Force, you typically work one night per week and some weekends as a minimum with possibilities of full-time employment.

Career Overview


Canadian Armed Forces Recruiting Videos



Reviewed – 31 Mar 23


MAJOR DAVE HITCHCOCK: I’m Major Dave Hitchcock from Amherst, Nova Scotia, a Military Police Officer with the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service here in Ottawa, Ontario.


NARRATOR: Military Police Officers provide leadership and direction to the military police, and guidance to other leaders in the Forces on issues that affect security, policing and detention services. This includes managing military police patrols and investigations, administering police operations, and overseeing the execution of other security-related tasks. 


MAJOR DAVE HITCHCOCK: It's a very unique role because we act as police officers, as well as leaders in a police environment. So while you may find yourself doing policing, it's more likely you’re doing leadership in policing, which might be taking care of your subordinates, making sure they have what they need to do the job, be it equipment or training. At the end of the day, my job is to control the speed, flow and direction of our investigations.


NARRATOR: The Military Police handle everything from cyber-crimes to dockside patrols, from guarding Canada’s diplomatic missions overseas to providing assistance to their fellow Canadians in the aftermath of a natural disaster. 


MAJOR DAVE HITCHCOCK: One of the biggest difference of being a Military Police Officer, as opposed to, say, a provincial police force officer, is the opportunity to deploy overseas and do policing in theatre.


NARRATOR: On deployment, Military Police Officers provide oversight to the planning and execution of security, force protection, the handling of prisoners of war and detainees, and ensure that discipline and the rule of law are maintained wherever they are located. 


Military Police Officers also have the chance to undergo specialized training in security, surveillance, close protection, airfield ground defence, counter-intelligence, and even major-crime investigations. 


In addition to full-time work in the Regular Force, there are also opportunities for Military Police Officers in the Primary Reserve, serving part-time in their local community while going to school or working at a civilian job.




MAJOR DAVE HITCHCOCK: One of the unique things about being a Military Police Officer is no two careers are ever the same. You could have multiple Military Police Officers in the same environment and all of them could have a different background, which is something that really appealed to me. No two days are ever the same.


NARRATOR: After they complete their training, new Military Police Officers may exercise leadership within a military police detachment conducting day-to-day policing and security activities on a base here in Canada, be assigned to a field platoon preparing for the next Canadian Armed Forces deployment, or work at different levels of Military Police headquarters. This is the only police force where someone could be employed not just anywhere in Canada, but anywhere in the world.  


MAJOR DAVE HITCHCOCK: In a civilian police force, you might start as a patrol officer and slowly work your way up to a leadership position where you might be running a detachment. As a Military Police Officer, you get that experience right away once you're fully trained. So you could be a Military Police Officer running a police detachment within your first few years as a trained police officer. The best advice I can give is to remain open-minded, take advice from both your subordinates and your leaders. Someone will always be there to lead you down the right path.


MAJOR DAVE HITCHCOCK: I always wanted to be a police officer since I was younger. I went to university and then I was looking forward to a career in policing. And really at the end of the day, it was the opportunity to be both a soldier and a police officer at the same time that made me join the Canadian Forces. 


Related Civilian Occupations

  • Royal Canadian Mounted Police
  • Provincial and regional police officers
  • Federal law enforcement officers (customs, immigration and fisheries)


After enrolment, you start basic officer training at the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, for 12 weeks. Topics covered include general military knowledge, the principles of leadership, regulations and customs of the CAF, basic weapons handling, and first aid. Opportunities will also be provided to apply such newly acquired military skills in training exercises involving force protection, field training, navigation and leadership. A rigorous physical fitness program is also a vital part of basic training. Basic officer training is provided in English or French and successful completion is a prerequisite for further training.

Following basic officer training, official second language training may be offered to you. Training could take from two to nine months to complete depending on your ability in your second language.

Common Army phase

After basic training, you will go to the Infantry School at the Combat Training Centre in Gagetown, New Brunswick. You will build upon the leadership training you received in basic officer training in addition to learning the skills required of all Combat Arms Soldiers, including more advanced weapons-handling, field-craft, and section-level tactics.

Learn more about Basic Training here.

Military Police Officers then attend the Military Police Officer Qualification course in Borden, Ontario. This course is six months long and includes the following topics:

  • Military police patrol management
  • Police operations administration
  • Crime scene management supervision
  • Investigation and interview techniques
  • Investigation management
  • Police program administration
  • Security programs administration
  • Military police units in field operations command

Military Police Officers may be offered the opportunity to develop specialized skills through formal courses and on-the-job training, including:

  • Criminal identification specialist
  • Polygraph examiner
  • Major crime investigator
  • Crime scene manager
  • Major case team commander
  • Drug investigator
  • Aircraft security specialist
  • Sexual assault and fraud investigations
  • Homicide investigation
  • Forensic identification
  • Undercover operative
  • Close protection
  • Army tactical operations
  • Executive police development

As they progress in their career, Military Police Officers who demonstrate the required ability and potential will be offered advanced training. Available courses include:

  • Information security investigation specialist
  • Criminal investigator
  • Counter-human intelligence specialist
  • Surveillance operator
  • Officer safety instructor
  • Senior police administration

Entry plans

As part of the application process, all candidates who meet the minimum requirements will be required to complete career orientation and an aptitude assessment at a Military Police Assessment Centre to ensure that they have a realistic view of the Military Police Officer occupation and the potential to succeed.

If you already have a university degree, preferably in a criminal justice-related field, the CAF will decide if your academic background matches the criteria for this job and may place you directly into the required job training program following basic training. Basic training and military officer qualification training are required before being assigned.

Regular Officer Training Plan

Due to the requirement for CAF officer to obtain a university degree, the CAF will pay successful recruits to complete a bachelor degree program in the Royal Military College System. Recruits will receive full-time salary including medical and dental care, as well as vacation time with full pay in exchange for working in the CAF for a period of time. Typically, candidates enter the Canadian Military College System as an Officer Cadet where they study subjects relevant to both their military and academic career. In rare instances, based on the needs of the CAF, candidates may be approved attend another Canadian University. A determination will be made on a case by case basis. If you are applying for this program, you must apply to the CAF and it is recommended to apply to other Canadian universities of your choice should you not be accepted for ROTP.

Learn more about our Paid Education programs here.

Part time options

This position is available for part-time employment with the Primary Reserve at certain locations across Canada. Reserve Force members usually serve part time at an Air Force Wing in their community, and may serve while going to school or working at a civilian job. They are paid during their training. They are not posted or required to do a military move. However, they can volunteer to move to another base. They may also volunteer for deployment on a military mission within or outside Canada.

Military Police Officers may serve with the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Army or the Royal Canadian Air Force. They are employed leading teams of Military Police members in enforcing laws and regulations at CAF establishments in Canada and abroad. When they are employed on a part-time or casual full-time basis they usually serve with a Military Police Group at a location within Canada.

Find a Recruiting Centre

Reserve Force members are trained to the same level as their Regular Force counterparts. They usually begin training with their home unit to ensure that they meet the required basic professional military standards. Following basic officer training, the home unit will arrange for specialized skills training. Military Police Officers train at the Combat Training Centre in Gagetown, New Brunswick and then complete their Military Police Officer Qualification course in Borden, Ontario.

Reserve Force members usually serve part-time with their home unit for scheduled evenings and weekends, although they may also serve in full-time positions at some units for fixed terms, depending on the type of work that they do. They are paid 92.8% of Regular Force rates of pay, receive a reasonable benefits package and may qualify to contribute to a pension plan.