Reservist Leadership during Crisis: CAF Response to COVID-19 in Atlantic Canada

Lieutenant-Colonel Barry Pitcher, Commanding Officer, Princess Louise Fusiliers, spoke to RUSI(NS) and guests 16 September 2020 with a presentation titled “Reservist Leadership during Crisis: CAF Response to COVID-19 in Atlantic Canada.”

In March of 2020, the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) implemented Operation LASER in response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada. A part of that operation saw Atlantic Canada mobilize the largest contingent of reservists since the Second World War. Control of Op LASER fell under the command of Joint Task Force Atlantic, and the tactical control that was stood up was labelled the ‘Land Component Command (LCC).’ The LCC was a concept that has been in CAF doctrine for some time but had been rarely used. Brigadier-General Roch Pelletier, Commander, 5 Division, was the only formation commander in Canada to select this particular concept. LCol Pitcher highlighted that the uniqueness of the LCC was that it was staffed entirely by reservist officers from within the Atlantic Region. These were men and women who have been ‘dual citizens’ their entire career and were suddenly called upon to assume senior military positions. LCol Pitcher was the Operations Officer (G3) for this LCC, and spoke on key lessons learned.

A PDF of the presentation is available here.

RUSI(NS) Staff

Editorial Staff at RUSI (NS). This work is the sole opinion of the author and does not necessarily represent the views of the Canadian Department of National Defence, the Canadian Armed Forces, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police or the Royal United Services Institute of Nova Scotia.