How it Started
Women started serving the Canadian military 135 years ago when in 1885 a group of nurses volunteered in military hospitals during the North-West Rebellion. According to thecanadianencyclopedia.ca Major-General John W. Laurie considered their service to be proof to the soldiers that they ‘had not been forgotten by the gentler sex.’
Women continued to step up and care for the health and wellbeing of our soldiers through the South African War and WWI. By WWII their roles expanded to administrative, communications, and other support roles.
How it’s Going
The Canadian Forces started recruiting women outside of wartime in the regular army and navy by the mid-1950s. Since then the government has removed all prior prohibition on women in the military, including allowing women to perform in combat roles.
There are still a lot fewer women in the Canadian Forces than men, but this slowly changing. As the Canadian Forces are increasing their recruitment efforts more and more women are stepping up to keep us safe and support their fellow soldiers.
How we say Thank You
Today we take the time to honour and remember all of the men and women who have serviced in our military. We show our gratitude for their service, with a moment of silence, wearing our poppies.