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Governor General and the uniform

Edward Campbell

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An interesting tidbit, reproduced under the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act from the Ottawa Citizen:

http://www.ottawacitizen.com/sports/likely+wear+uniform/3650722/story.html
New GG likely won't wear uniform
Military's new commander-in-chief takes on 'precious responsibility'


BY TOBI COHEN, POSTMEDIA NEWS

OCTOBER 10, 2010


3610658.bin

David Johnston inspects the guard of honour after being sworn-in as Canada's 28th Governor General on Parliament Hill in Ottawa October 1, 2010.
Photograph by: Chris Wattie, Reuters


Canada's new Governor General says he has a lot to learn, particularly when it comes to the military, and he's anxious to get started.

"The military is not something I have known a lot about and in this new role, I am commander-in-chief of the armed forces," David Johnston told the CBC's Peter Mansbridge in a wide-ranging interview that aired in its entirety Saturday.

"That's a precious responsibility." Although his predecessor, Michaëlle Jean, wore a military uniform on several occasions, something that's become less common among governors general over the years, Johnston said he's unlikely to do the same.

"If I had a military background I would've put on the uniform with great pride," said the 69-year-old.

"Perhaps on the last day of the job, as a way of showing respect for this wonderful tradition." Johnston, who officially took over the position of the Queen's representative this month at a ceremony in Ottawa, told Mansbridge he was both "interested" and "honoured" when approached for the position, but that his wife, Sharon, needed a little more convincing.

He said it was Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife, Laureen, who managed to sell her on the move over dinner.

"Over a period of reflection she came to develop some enthusiasm for the position, but it was an adjustment," Johnston said.

"Today, of course, she's delighted because she, like I, are honoured to have the opportunity to serve." Asked about his favourite NHL team, the one-time Harvard hockey star, who spent a number of years in Montreal as McGill University principal and also taught at the University of Toronto, refused to say.

"I'll embrace the Ottawa Senators but, you know, I'll embrace every hockey team in the country because I love the game," he said.

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen


Her Majesty does wear uniform on a very few special occasions, like her official birthday but normally, including on Remembrance Sunday, she wears mufti.

The GG still has options, I believe, including his own ‘dress uniform:’

mitch.jpg


But the GG’s own web site says:

”As Commander-in-Chief of the Canadian Forces, the governor general may, in this capacity, wear the uniform at events.

The Canadian Forces Publication (CFP) which regulates the wear of military uniforms for the Governor General is CFP 265, the Canadian Forces Dress Instructions manual.

The governor general wears a flag/general officer uniform with special flag/general sleeve braid, embellished with the governor general’s badge, and a large embroidered governor general’s badge on the shoulder straps or boards.

A number of Canadian governors general have worn the military uniform including Vincent Massey (1952-59), Georges P. Vanier (1959-1967), Roland Michener (1967-1974), Edward Schreyer (1979-1984), Jeanne Sauvé (1984-1990) Ramon Hnatyshyn (1990-1995) and Michaëlle Jean (2005-2010).


I think that Massey and Michener normally (always?) wore ‘court dress’ (the GG’s uniform, pictured above) when a ‘uniform’ was necessary but I know, for sure, that Vanier, Schreyer, Sauvé and Jean all wore CF uniforms, now and again.
 
Perhaps if put into perspective, he will see fit to wear a CF uniform.  He already does wear a "uniform", looking at the photo.  He is wearing a formal suit which in itself is a "uniform".  There are business suits, Tuxedos, Mess Kit, DEUs, etc.; all of which are "uniforms".
 
He's already out-of-dress on the first day on the job.  Many electrons have been burned on the topic before, but the GG is entitled to the CD - and he's not wearing it in the photo...
 
dapaterson said:
He's already out-of-dress on the first day on the job.  Many electrons have been burned on the topic before, but the GG is entitled to the CD - and he's not wearing it in the photo...

Neither is he wearing insignia of the orders in which he was invested as part of the installation ceremony that finished just before he went outside and inspected the guard as seen in the photo.  The orders, decorations and medals that he is wearing in the photo were all received long before he was selected to become GG.  The Canadian Forces Decoration was not (IIRC) one of the honours presented to him during the installation ceremony when he was also made Chancellor(s) of The Order of Canada (a promotion since he is already a Companion of the order). Order of Military Merit and Order of Merit of the Police Forces.  I don't know the usual protocol for presentation of the CD to Governors-General, but my expectation is it will likely be presented to him by the CDS.  Hopefully, it won't be during a coffee break as was the case when I received mine.

As for individuals on that parade being out of dress . . . it appears that the somewhat rotund Air Force NCM just to the left of the GG does not have his CD court mounted.  Also, while he is not visible in the above photo, the guard commander (a LCdr) was wearing the black leather CF sword belt outside his naval uniform.  I haven't been able to find any photos of that officer but recall it from watching the ceremony on TV.
 
Blackadder1916 said:
it appears that the somewhat rotound Air Force NCM just to the left of the GG does not have his CD court mounted. 

Which is actually more appropriate when one only has a single medal.  As I recall, when one has two or more, they are "court" mounted, so that when one is in the Royal Court, they don't "ding" (from swinging) when you move about.  The fellow with the GCS-SWA to his right is less-correct (though accepted) with his court-mounted single medal.
 
Blackadder1916 said:
As for individuals on that parade being out of dress . . . it appears that the somewhat rotound Air Force NCM just to the left of the GG does not have his CD court mounted. 

;D

His belt seems to have slipped a bit as well.    ;D
 
dapaterson said:
He's already out-of-dress on the first day on the job.  Many electrons have been burned on the topic before, but the GG is entitled to the CD - and he's not wearing it in the photo...

I noticed this with Michel Jean as well in her first photos.  Then it seemed that she was acquiring a new one every 40 days as the photos appeared in the media of her attending various State and military functions.  I'll accept the precedence that was offered when I first questioned her having the CD, and accept to Blackadder1916's comment as a good probability as well.
 
Technoviking said:
Which is actually more appropriate when one only has a single medal.  As I recall, when one has two or more, they are "court" mounted, so that when one is in the Royal Court, they don't "ding" (from swinging) when you move about.  The fellow with the GCS-SWA to his right is less-correct (though accepted) with his court-mounted single medal.

According to A-AD-265-000/AG-001, it appears that it is no longer optional for CF members to keep their gongs "swing mounted".

METHOD OF MOUNTING AND WEARING
ORDERS, DECORATIONS AND MEDALS

6. General

a. Order of Precedence. The insignia of
Canadian, Commonwealth and foreign
orders, decorations and medals shall be
worn in order of precedence . . .

b. Method of Wear. Medals should hang in
one row so that they are fully visible.
Should this not be possible, because of the
number being worn, they shall be
overlapped horizontally . . .

c. Court Mountings. Court mounting shall be
used. The length from the top of the medal
bar suspender to the bottom edge of the
medal shall be 10 cm (4 in.). The ribbons
and medals shall be mounted on a panel,
its size being determined by the number of
ribbons worn. The lower edge of the panel
shall be in line with the centre of the
medals. Commencing from the lower edge,
each ribbon runs up the front of the panel
to the top and back down to the medal. The
medals shall then be stitched to the panel
to prevent them from swinging. This
method prevents medals from clinking
against each other.
 
Technoviking said:
Which is actually more appropriate when one only has a single medal.  As I recall, when one has two or more, they are "court" mounted, so that when one is in the Royal Court, they don't "ding" (from swinging) when you move about.  The fellow with the GCS-SWA to his right is less-correct (though accepted) with his court-mounted single medal.

Negative. Book says medals are to be court mounted:

A-AD-265-000/AG-000 - CF Dress Instructions said:
Chapter 4, Para 6c.:

Mounting. Court mounting shall be used. The length from the top of the medal bar suspender to the bottom edge of the medal shall be 10 cm (4 in.).

Now, I didn't download the latest and greatest copy from the Interweb after the last bout of he-said, she-said WRT medals / decorations, but it is there in the latest version as well.

Now in saying that, I don't know of many outside the Land Force who actually know this, much less enforce it when only one medal is worn. Picky? Yes. Part of my job, especially as of late - you betcha  ;)

Edit: Beaten by a couple minutes due to double checking...
 
Blackadder1916 said:
According to A-AD-265-000/AG-001, it appears that it is no longer optional for CF members to keep their gongs "swing mounted".


Oh, I thought it was customary, despite the 'court' not wanting medals and swords to clank, for naval types always to wear their medals 'loose.' I'm pretty sure my boss - about 25 years ago - a rear admiral, 'explained' that (old naval custom, etc) to me when I 'suggested' that court mounting looked better - something about junior services, lack of tradition, etc, etc, etc, if I recall, and all delivered at 60 db above the comfort level.


Edit: typo
 
Capt. Happy said:
Negative. Book says medals are to be court mounted:

Now, I didn't download the latest and greatest copy from the Interweb after the last bout of he-said, she-said WRT medals / decorations, but it is there in the latest version as well.

Now in saying that, I don't know of many outside the Land Force who actually know this, much less enforce it when only one medal is worn. Picky? Yes. Part of my job, especially as of late - you betcha  ;)

Edit: Beaten by a couple minutes due to double checking...
:salute:
I learned something new today. 

:cheers:
 
Blackadder1916 said:
. . .

As for individuals on that parade being out of dress . . . it appears that the somewhat rotund Air Force NCM just to the left of the GG does not have his CD court mounted.  Also, while he is not visible in the above photo, the guard commander (a LCdr) was wearing the black leather CF sword belt outside his naval uniform.  I haven't been able to find any photos of that officer but recall it from watching the ceremony on TV.

Have found a photo of the parade commander courtesy of CFSU(Ottawa).

SU2010-1285-03.jpg

"Parade Commander Lieutenant-Commander Doma, salutes the Governor General at the beginning of the parade."

Judging from the visble sword belt, this officer was also unaware of dress instructions.  Wasn't there at least one Sergeant-Major in the neighbourhood to make sure everybody was properly dressed?
 
He, that guard commander, also buggered up the vice regal salute - half the (visible) people went to the present from the shoulder and the other half from the order. Oh well, it's only NDHQ and no, there are never sergeants major around when they are needed - lots of very senior WOs but no sergeants major.

 
The sword belt being worn outside the Navy DEU tunic looks so odd, actually the first time I've ever seen it worn like that despite hearing anecdotes of people doing this from time to time on parade.
 
E.R. Campbell said:
He, that guard commander, also buggered up the vice regal salute  . . .

Well, being Navy, it would be traditional for him to be familiar with "buggery".
 
Do you think we can let him settle into the job before we pick apart every chicken shit item he failed on his first day? None of this is his fault, blame his handlers. ::)

As for the others on parade, I think you're blowing smoke if you think the Navy and the Air Force are concerned they made a wrong drill movement or can't follow the dress regs. ;)
 
recceguy said:
As for the others on parade, I think you're blowing smoke if you think the Navy and the Air Force are concerned they made a wrong drill movement or can't follow the dress regs. ;)

I will be the first to vote for letting the army handle any and all parades. I won't take it personaly, it just means a few more days a year where i can go flying instead.
 
Technoviking said:
Which is actually more appropriate when one only has a single medal.  As I recall, when one has two or more, they are "court" mounted, so that when one is in the Royal Court, they don't "ding" (from swinging) when you move about.  The fellow with the GCS-SWA to his right is less-correct (though accepted) with his court-mounted single medal.

Actually, even one is supposed to be court mounted now. That changed with the move to cover the costs with Crown funds. IIRC, I've posted the proper ref from the regs on this site a few years ago now.
 
Technoviking said:
:salute:
I learned something new today. 

:cheers:

Here it is. And, you're memory must be getting bad in your old age - I posted this to the former Captain Scarlet (geez TV, I wonder who that was!!?)  >:D

Para c.

http://forums.army.ca/forums/threads/54253/post-491844.html#msg491844
 
CDN Aviator said:
I will be the first to vote for letting the army handle any and all parades. I won't take it personaly, it just means a few more days a year where i can go flying instead.

There was a reason, when I was posted to Comox, that every important parade was staffed with remusters from the Army ;)
 
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