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A Female Member’s Perspective: Hiring on Merit vs Stats

Nov 25

I cannot help but get perturbed when I hear this issue of meeting the number of female recruits, promoting females etc. etc.  Unless we are recruited and promoted based on MERIT, why should we be interested in responding to the politics of a profession with an unproven track record, even though there have been women in their ranks for nearly 40 years. The RCMP still continues to treat female members as if it is a bonus and exception for a woman to be promoted through the ranks. Indeed, with approximately 20% of the entire force being women, the management is correct to treat us as if they are doing us a favour when they  promote us ever so condescendingly. Being a so called token female and helping the RCMP to meet its statistical measures is far from fulfilling  for women in the service.

Unfortunately given the old boys club attitude and perpetuating reign in place with the very arrogant Mr. Paulsen, what chance will women have at a sincere opportunity for success? If the senior executive committee of each division and the RCMP in Ottawa are paying attention to the business pages of our national online news or the ancient newspapers, perhaps they are noticing that many of their senior members are now female. These women are able to break through the so called glass ceiling of our organization and carry out some of the very necessary change and bring forward some rehabilitated thinking which has been been stomped on, suppressed and minimized for years by their senior male supervisors who are now retiring. These women are  enjoying the freedom from their families and time constraints that they have worked through and are still very interested and dedicated in the RCMP. Perhaps Mr. Paulsen and Mr. Toews could mine some of this  talent instead of infuriating exsiting men and women by initiating a new, rather discriminatory recruiting drive which has nothing to do with working with the present talents available to them. This would be enacting some positive change with the rank and file which have previously been underclassed by both supervisors and peers, due to the culture of the force. This could go a very long way towards correcting some long held misconceptions about and within the RCMP.


  1. Calvin Lawrence permalink

    Someday the realization will come to non-white people and women that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police is a White Male dominated organization controlled by White Males for the benefit of White Males. All others have to be hired by law. If it were not for the legal requirement to hire women and non-whites they would not be hired.

    If it makes them feel better to have the “illusion of inclusion” then who am I to burst their bubble.

    I guess the polite and political term for all this is harassment. The real terms are racist and sexist behaviour. As long as there are non-white and female members who have “assimilation fantasies” nothing will change.

    Hiring and promotion of a designated group has nothing to do with holding individuals accountable for their racist and sexist behaviour regarding that group.

    There are guidelines in place called oaths and core values of the RCMP that will hold individuals accountable for racist and sexist behaviour.
    Until the above is realized and enforced everything else will just be conversation.

    Calvin Lawrence
    RCMP Retired 28yr
    7th Generation Black Canadian

  2. John Smith permalink

    Hello anon,
    Congratulations on getting it. Good on you for bringing good positive for all as opposed to jumping on this idiot wagon and again creating animosity between genders as opposed to making the right choice.

    For the longest time the R.C.M.P. has ignored “logic” and responds in a ” knee jerk” fashion. Simply put, as you so eloquently stated, positive change is what we as members want to see. Mr. Paulson has jumped out of his final cake. He should not be cut any slack or given the benefit of the doubt. His comments are ignorant his attitude fails to demonstrate any leadership qualities and most of all he is once again making the female members look like poor sheep that have not been given a chance at the front of the line. Knee jerk politically pleasing decisions will not resolve the issues of the force. As I have previously stated and will continue to say, and support Dr. Webster in his line of thinking is simply to have good positive changes lead by committed, dedicated leaders who care about their own.

    You can talk to most, if not all, members and they will tell you as long as their leader is competent, professional, and genuinely cares about the people he or she supervises, then who cares what race color creed or gender he or she may be.

    Funny, the force is full of committed members and asking them they will tell you that those are the ones that want nothing to do with leading as they are all aware that the minute they take that position, the “old boys club” will be telling them how to lead and what is the order of business.

    Two very close members told me that they were told that their days were numbered in the det. they worked in and that their promotions were now “non existent” for having confronted management and challenged them on a decision.

    This happened very recently and re-enforces my beliefs about this broken down dictatorship ruled organization.

    We need change for everyone’s benefit now or we will soon loose one of Canada’s proudest organizations.

    Take care all and be safe out there.
    John Smith.

  3. Mike McTaggart permalink

    Anon, I think that you have touched on one of the primary points of contention affecting how individual members view other members. Personally, I don’t believe there are many people who want to be hired or have their personal advancement in any organization to be based primarily on being part of a “target group”. Where is the satisfaction in that? There is a real sense of pride to know that the organization hires only a small percentage of applicants and that you were part of that small percentage based on merit.

    In the late 90’s I worked on the same office as a certain female member who, during one promotion cycle, received a phone call from a member in Staffing. Because we sat so close together, I couldn’t help but hear her side of the conversation and what I heard led me to believe she was becoming quite indignant towards the person she was speaking with. After the call, she told me that “so and so” had asked her if she twas taking part in the promotion process and that if she was, he/she could guarantee her success as the Division was looking for more female NCOs. I know from what I heard that she had politely told him/her to go to hell, that if she was going to compete for promotion she would do it like everyone else, on her own merit. Now, did the person from Staffing actually have the juice to push through a promotion? I don’t know, maybe. In my view what’s important here is that my coworker demonstrated what I believe to be true of most members; make the system fair for all with a “level playing field” and let members compete and succeed on merit. When we make exceptions for anyone and hire or promote based on filling quotas, I believe it reduces moral and breeds contempt on one side and entitlement on the other.

    I just want to say Hi to Cal Lawrence. Cal you probably don’t remember me but I was on the cover team in Winnipeg in the late 80s. Good to see your still kicking, or should I say still skipping????



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