Before they became the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in 1920, they were the North-West Mounted Police. Centered predominantly in Prairies, their duties back then were three-fold: to demolish the illegal whiskey trade, improve relations with the aboriginal First Nations tribe, and further drive the stake in Canada’s claim to the West. So what are the duties of the RCMP today? They actually still work with Aboriginal people to a great capacity. They also provide provincial police services in cities across Canada.
Serving Aboriginal Communities
The RCMP maintains the National Aboriginal Policing Services (NAPS), which helps to develop and manage strategies for keeping Canada’s Aboriginal population safe. According to the RCMP website, the program is in more than 634 Aboriginal communities, providing services like youth job training and suicide prevention. Programs like the Aboriginal Perceptions Training help RCMP officers better communicate with groups like the First Nations and Metis.
Through contracts with Public Safety Canada, the RCMP provides police services to all provinces except Quebec and Ontario. This includes enforcing laws, conducting federal investigations and working to maintain peace in more than 200 municipalities and 165 Aboriginal communities. The RCMP works under a community policing philosophy, meaning it consults with the community to figure out how it can offer the most effective policing services.
Immediate Action Rapid Deployment
The Immediate Action Rapid Deployment (IARD) team consists of RCMP members who are trained to deal with life-threatening situations that are an immediate and ongoing threat to public safety. For example, if there were a school shooting in progress, the IARD team would be deployed to take whatever action is necessary to protect the public.
Provide Air Services
Thanks to the Air Services, the RCMP has one of the largest fleet operations in Canada. Their primary duty is to provide support to operational personnel within the RCMP and those who work with them. This includes team members within regional patrols. They also carry out important searches, as well as transport supplies and prisoners.