National Search and Rescue Secretariat
The National Search and Rescue Secretariat (Secretariat) provides policy advice and recommendations to support Canada's search and rescue efforts. The Secretariat also plays an important role in prevention through outreach initiatives that foster communication, interoperability and coordination within the search and rescue (SAR) community.
The Secretariat is also responsible for the overall management and leadership of Canada’s contribution to the International COSPAS-SARSAT Programme. The Secretariat is responsible for providing Canada’s Permanent Representative to the Programme’s Council, ensuring Canada meets its obligations as one of the four leaders and signatories to the COSPAS-SARSAT Treaty, as well as the coordination of Canada’s inputs to, and obligations stemming from, the Programme.
The priorities and activities of the Secretariat and those of the Interdepartmental Committees on Search and Rescue are linked; each informing the other.
The priorities of the Secretariat are to
- Enable the coordinated priorities of other government departments and stakeholders through governance support, programming, and overarching policy direction
- Assume leadership roles in various aspects of SAR such as the COSPAS-SARSAT Programme, SAR prevention, SAR in emergency management, and other areas
More specifically, the Secretariat’s priority activities involve the following:
- Advance Canada’s Heavy Urban Search and Rescue Program
- Enhance coordination of Canada’s SAR prevention programs
- Renew Canada’s national SAR policy framework
- Improve Canada’s SAR governance
- Continue to coordinate the Government of Canada participation and leadership in the International COSPAS-SARSAT Programme, providing oversight and advancing international treaty negotiations.
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