Summary of CBSA’s Business Continuity Plan

Classification: Unclassified

Branch/Agency: FCMB/CBSA

Proposed Response:


In accordance with the Emergency Management Act and the Policy on Government Security, the CBSA is responsible for preparing plans and arrangements that, in the event of a disruption, ensures an acceptable level of delivery of critical services and activities, and can achieve the timely recovery of other services and activities

This policy was approved by Executive Committee on December 22, 2016 and was updated in August 2019 to reflect the Agency’s new Functional Management Model. This policy is applicable to all CBSA employees (permanent, term, casual, and part-time), contract and private agency personnel and to individuals seconded or assigned to CBSA, including students.

CBSA currently has 440 Business Continuity Plans (BCPs), covering 230 Ports of Entry, Inland Enforcement offices across the country and, in Headquarters, the National Targeting Centre and National Security Screening.

Business Continuity during the Covid-19 Pandemic

Given the highly operational nature of the CBSA, with over 8,000 officers positioned on the frontlines, business continuity planning is an integral aspect of the Agency’s response to COVID-19.

In response to the spread of the coronavirus and escalating measures introduced by the Government for the public service, the CBSA created an internal COVID-19 Task Force to serve as a hub for internal emergency management across all internal services (Human Resources (HR), Information Technology, Real Property, Security, Material Management, Communications, Finance and Business Continuity Planning) in their supporting role to operations.

CBSA has identified five Critical Services to accomplish its mandate and Government objectives to support the health, safety, economic well being of Canadians and the effective functioning of government:

During regular operations, managing workforce availability to sustain Critical Services is a routine activity that regularly includes local reassignment of officers to respond to operational demand, in particular as traveller and commercial volumes may vary.

In the context of COVID-19, invoking BCPs for CBSA would come as a result of an extraordinary increase in workforce absenteeism, such that operations could not be sustained to deliver Critical Services. At this stage, all CBSA Critical Services are being delivered and no Business Continuity Plan (BCP) has been activated.

However, readiness to activate BCPs is being heightened through the following measures:

As the situation evolves, CBSA will consider more measures such as:

In managing this situation the CBSA has established an Executive Management Committee, which meets daily to address key issues and provide clear direction to staff. Key issues include:

The CBSA is also enhancing its union-management relationship. The Agency amplified the formal and informal mechanisms established to engage with the Unions on various HR and health and safety issues:


Prepared by: Pierre Lessard, Director General, Professional Standards and Security Directorate, 613-316-7461

Approved by: Jonathan Moor, Vice-President Finance and Corporate Management Branch and Chief Financial Officer, 613-601-2891

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