Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

October 19, 2009 13:30 ET

Sacrifice Medal to Recognize All Service-Related Deaths

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 19, 2009) - The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway, today announced new criteria for the Sacrifice Medal. First announced in August 2008 by the Governor General as a formal recognition to those who are killed or wounded by hostile action, the eligibility criteria have been expanded to recognize all service-related deaths. This change will ensure that all service-related deaths after October 7, 2001, are recognized and treated equitably.

"The Government of Canada is committed to honouring and recognizing the valued contribution of our Canadian Forces members," said Minister MacKay. "We hope this announcement will be warmly received by the families of those who sacrificed their lives while serving Canada."

The criteria remain unchanged for those wounded as a direct result of hostile action requiring recorded treatment by a medical officer. Members of an allied force working as an integral part of the Canadian Forces (CF), such as exchange personnel, and civilian employees working under the authority of the CF will continue to receive the medal as per the previous criteria. This aspect of the Medal therefore remains linked with the old Wound Stripe which it replaced. The eligibility date and the design of the medal remain unchanged.

Her Majesty The Queen approved the creation of the Sacrifice Medal to provide formal recognition to those who are killed or wounded by hostile action. Following the original announcement in August 2008, the Minister of National Defence asked the Chief of the Defence Staff to conduct a review of the existing criteria and make recommendations to the appropriate government committee. Details regarding the new eligibility criteria of the Sacrifice Medal can be found at the following site:

The inaugural presentation of the Sacrifice Medal is planned at Rideau Hall later this year.

Note to Editor: Media representatives are invited to a technical briefing via teleconference on Monday, October 19, 2009 at 4:00 p.m. (EST). A subject matter expert from the Directorate of Honours and Recognition will discuss the changes made to the Sacrifice Medal criteria. To register for the briefing please call the DND/CF Media Liaison Office at 996-2353 before 3:00 p.m. (EST).

For more information on the ceremony and Canadian Honours, please visit the Governor General's website at:

For more information on military honours, please visit the Department of National Defence Web site for CF Honours and Awards:

Contact Information