To establish procedures for the appropriate use of firearms
Applies to staff who are required to use firearms
The Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Institutional Operations, will:
ensure that each institution has procured and has available the appropriate amount of approved firearms to cover all armed posts
report to the Director General, Security, any incident where a firearm is modified or damaged
The Institutional Head will ensure:
every staff member issued a firearm or assigned to an armed post is properly trained and certified
firearms are not modified in any manner, unless such modifications are approved by National Headquarters Security Branch and are performed by a certified armourer as required
the Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Institutional Operations, is advised of any incident where a firearm is modified or damaged
Standing Orders are developed to outline:
responsibilities for the safe and secure control of firearms and ammunition
the completion of a Threat Risk Assessment if circumstances warrant an armed escort to accompany firearms and ammunition to/from a designated area
The Institutional Head or delegate will:
immediately report all thefts or loss of firearms or components of firearms (i.e. magazines) to the police department having jurisdiction and to the Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Institutional Operations
immediately notify the police department having jurisdiction, the Director General, Security, and the Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Institutional Operations, in all circumstances when a firearm has been discharged other than accidentally or for training purposes (in the case of an accidental discharge, an incident report will be completed pursuant to CD 568-1 – Recording and Reporting of Security Incidents)
ensure the Use of Force Report (CSC/SCC 0754) is completed
Staff who may be required to use firearms in the course of their duties will qualify annually in the use of firearms utilized in their specific institution, including:
No firearm will be fired at, or from, a moving vehicle or aircraft. However, if in the opinion of staff, the risk to the safety of staff members being fired upon is greater than the risk of firing back at the vehicle or aircraft, staff may fire upon the perpetrator(s).
Provided that there is low probability of injury or death to a person, firearms may be discharged other than noted above to:
regain control over a serious security situation
summon assistance when no other means are available
destroy a potentially dangerous animal or one that is so badly injured that to allow it to live would amount to cruelty
Shotguns will not normally be kept in armed posts.
All shotguns will be stored in the institutional armoury.
Correctional Officers will not transfer possession of firearms unless:
in a life-threatening situation
the Correctional Officer is incapacitated
for training reasons, or
as part of a procedure that is documented within a Standing Order for change-over on armed posts
Before warning shots are fired, a verbal warning will be given, unless time and circumstances do not permit.
A warning shot may be used to prevent death, grievous bodily harm or escapes from a medium or maximum-security institution when all lesser means are not available, have proven unsuccessful or are not the safest and most reasonable intervention given situational factors.
Use of Firearms
The following uses of a firearm constitute a use of force:
pointing a firearm at someone or displaying it as a show of force or for psychological effect
charging a firearm
discharging a warning shot
discharging an aimed shot
The physical presence of a firearm in conjunction with the duties of an armed post does not constitute a use of force (e.g. catwalk or in a tower) unless the firearm is used as described in the previous paragraph.
An aimed shot at an individual:
may be used to prevent destruction of property if there is a reasonable possibility that a life-threatening incident will develop
will only be used to prevent death, grievous bodily harm or escapes from a medium or maximum-security institution
The above situations will only occur if lesser means are not available, have proven unsuccessful or are not the safest and most reasonable intervention given situational factors.
By virtue of the population in maximum and medium-security institutions, staff in armed posts can reasonably assume that the inmates in those institutions meet the criteria pursuant to paragraph 25(5)(a) of the Criminal Code.
In the event that a helicopter or other air/water craft is used to assist in an inmate’s escape from a medium or maximum-security institution, staff may use the necessary force, including the firing of a firearm at the escapee, to prevent him/her from reaching the helicopter or other craft and escaping.
In instances where an attack on the perimeter occurs, including perimeter posts, the staff assigned to the post will use the appropriate force, including the use of a firearm, to stop the attack.
Stored firearms will be unloaded and stored in a container, receptacle, vault, safe, or room that has been specifically constructed or modified for the secure storage of firearms.
Ammunition will not normally be stored within the immediate proximity and accessibility to firearms and will be stored as per the standards stated above.
Entry to the storage area by anyone other than the Security Maintenance Officer will be documented indicating:
the reason for the entry
item(s) authorized to be removed
who authorized the entry
Transportation of Restricted or Prohibited Firearms
Staff may be authorized by the Institutional Head to transport a particular firearm in a registered Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) vehicle between two or more specified places for a valid reason. For example:
for use in target practice under specified conditions or under the auspices of an approved shooting range
to provide training as part of an approved firearms course as per the National Training Standards
An individual may transport a firearm only if the firearm is:
rendered inoperable by means of a secure locking device
in a locked container that is made of an opaque material and is of such strength, construction and nature that it cannot readily be broken into or accidentally opened during transportation
A firearm placed in a container described above can be left in an unattended vehicle provided that:
the vehicle is equipped with a trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked, the container is placed in the trunk/compartment which must then be securely locked, or
if the vehicle is not equipped with a trunk or similar compartment that can be securely locked, the vehicle or the part of the vehicle that contains the container, is securely locked and the container is not visible
Maintenance and Repair
Only persons who are assigned the responsibility for care, control and storage of firearms and who possess certification by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Armourer Section will conduct routine cleaning and maintenance of assigned firearms. All modifications and/or repairs to CSC scale of issue firearms will be approved by the Director General, Security, through consultation with the RCMP.
All modifications and/or repairs to CSC scale of issue firearms will be performed by certified RCMP armourers.