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Governor General, Protocol Office

The Protocol Office of the Governor General is responsible for policy, planning and protocol, events and visitor services, public affairs, program operations and security and household services.

Office of the Secretary to the Governor General

Patricia Jaton, Deputy Secretary, Policy, Program and Protocol, 613-990-9006

Christine MacIntyre, Executive Director, Events, Household and Visitor Services, 613-993-1901

Annabelle Cloutier, Director, Communications and Public Affairs, 613-993-8158

Protocol Office of the Parliament of Canada

The Protocol Office of the Parliament of Canada complements the work of Parliamentary Exchanges and Parliamentary Associations by lending leadership, expertise and advice on all matters of protocol. The Office ensures that protocol standards are applied to all official visits of foreign parliamentarians and Canadian dignitaries invited by the Speaker of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Commons, and that visiting dignitaries receive all diplomatic courtesies.

The Protocol Office organizes all official events held on Parliament Hill, such as the welcoming of foreign heads of state and government, or other senior parliamentary dignitaries, addresses to Parliament, official recognition ceremonies, or special high-level parliamentary and ceremonial events.

The Protocol Office is also mandated to organize and manage all parliamentary conferences held in Canada.

Contacts: Protocol Office of the Parliament of Canada

Nancy Anctil, Chief of Protocol and Events Management, 613-944-6862

Astrid Ratzel, Protocol Coordinator, 613-943-2733

Kate Bourke, Protocol Coordinator, 613-996-1113

International and Interparliamentary Affairs, 613-943-5959

Address: 131 Queen Street, 5th Floor, Parliament of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0A6, Fax: 613-944-7497

Global Affairs Canada, Protocol Office

(Source: Global Affair Canada, Protocol Office, www.international.gc.ca)

Global Affairs Canada was formerly known as the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development. The Accreditation Unit of this department is responsible for the accreditation of diplomats and their families, as well as the provision of specific documents once they have assumed their assigned posts in Canada. Any inquiries regarding accreditation can be addressed over the phone with a designated protocol officer or submitted in writing to the Office of Protocol. For more information visit: http://www.international.gc.ca/protocol-protocole/accreditation_unit-unite_accreditation.aspxunite_accreditation.aspx

Contacts: Global Affairs Accreditation Unit

Magdalena Molaire Calixte, Manager, Accreditation and Registrar: 343-203-3018, email: [email protected]

The Office of Protocol’s CIC (Citizenship and Immigration Canada) Liaison Unit provides services related to visas for the following: foreign representatives or accompanying family members who are eligible for accreditation; domestic workers, as per Household Domestic Worker Employment agreements; children born to foreign representatives while in Canada; continuation of studies following the departure of foreign representatives; and, locally engaged staff.

Contacts: Global Affairs CIC (Citizenship and Immigration Canada) Liaison Unit

Telephone: 613-992-0889 Fax: 343-203-3011

The Office of Protocol’s Privileges and Immunities Unit manages the various services and programs available to foreign representatives in Canada in accordance with current bilateral agreements.This office is able to assist foreign representatives with the following items: real property; property taxes; customs clearance and importation of goods for official or personal use; duties and taxes; provincial retail sales taxes; diplomatic and consular bags and other airport courtesies; vehicles; foreign voting in Canada.

Contacts: Global Affairs Privileges and Immunities Unit

Telephone: 613-944-1159 Email: [email protected]

Global Affairs Canada offices are normally open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday to Friday, except statutory holidays.

For advice on the immunities and privileges of accredited foreign representatives,

Contact: RCMP Security and Safety Liaison Officer, Diplomatic Corps Services, Office of Protocol

Heather Harding-Legault, Diplomatic Security and Safety Liaison Officer (RCMP), 343-203-2976

William Guerrero, Assistant Diplomatic Security, 343-203-3013

Privileges of Foreign Representatives

Quick interpretation chart

Designation Diplomatic Agent1 Admin & Tech Staff Service Staff Career Consular Officer Honorary Consular Officer Consular Employee
Obtaining Category of Acceptance and Identity Card D J J C None J
Immunity from national service obligations Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Criminal/civil proceedings: can be arrested and detained No2 No2 Yes Yes2,3 Yes4 Yes
Immunity from legal process, whether criminal or civil Yes Subject to limitations under Art. 37(2) of the VCDR Yes, in respect of acts performed in the course of official duties only Yes, in respect of acts performed in the exercise of consular functions only Yes, in respect of acts performed in the exercise of consular functions only Yes, in respect of acts performed in the exercise of consular functions only
Can be compelled to give evidence as witness No No Yes, unless related to official duties No Yes, unless related to consular duties Yes, unless related to consular duties
Immunity from jury duty Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Searches, incl. at airports: personal search (everywhere except at airports) No No Yes No Yes Yes
Airport pre-boarding screen Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Office entry and search No No No No Yes5 No
Residential entry and search No No Not if part of mission or official residence Yes Yes Yes
Private motor vehicle search No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Personal baggage search No6 Yes7 Yes7 Yes7 Yes7 Yes7
Immunity from immigration & aliens restrictions, incl. at Canadian points of entry8 No No No No No No
  1. Includes Members of the Administrative and Technical Staff of the United States of America. 
  2. A person enjoying personal inviolability such as a diplomatic agent, career consular officer or member of the administrative and technical staff, may be temporarily taken into protective custody in order to prevent the repetition or continuation of an offence, and until such time as a responsible member of the mission or post arrives to relieve the police of this responsibility.
  3. Career consular officers cannot be arrested or detained pending trial unless a judicial warrant has been obtained in advance and the charge is for a “grave crime” (maximum penalty five years or more), and issues of public safety are involved.
  4. Honorary consular officers should be treated as ordinary Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada, except when clearly acting in their consular capacity. The Government of Canada’s considers most instances of driving, including to and from work, as not “official acts” or “consular acts.” It follows that honorary consular officers will most likely be treated as ordinary Canadian citizens or permanent residents on matters of traffic laws.
  5. Consular archives in the custody of honorary consular officers must not be searched, provided that they are kept separate from all other office records and clearly marked as consular documents.
  6. Canada expects diplomatic agents and career consular officers to comply with normal security measures instituted at Canadian airports. This includes submitting their carry-on luggage through x-ray.
  7. The search of baggage of any person associated with a diplomatic mission or consular post must take into account that the person may be carrying “archives,” i.e. files or correspondence, which must not be manually searched. If a person claims to be carrying “archives,” these must be excluded from manual search.
  8. Accredited foreign representatives are, however, exempt from work permits.