Summary of the Evaluation of the Memorial Grant Program for First Responders

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About the Program

In recognition of the critical role of first responders in protecting Canadians, the Memorial Grant Program for First Responders (MGP) provides a one-time lump sum payment to the families of first responders who have died as a result of their duties. The payment is free from federal tax and has a maximum value of $300,000.

The program’s five-year budget is $117.4M for fiscal years 2018-19 to 2022-23, which includes funding for 72 annual grant payments of $300,000, as well as program operating costs.

What We Examined

The purpose of the evaluation was to assess the implementation of the program, including its design, early outcomes, and efficiency and economy. The evaluation covered the three-year period from fiscal year 2018-19 to 2020-21, the timeline of which does not include the expansion of the program to include correctional, parole and probation officers. Multiple lines of evidence were collected and analyzed to ensure triangulation of findings.

Evaluation Findings


The Assistant Deputy Minister, Emergency Management and Programs Branch, should:

  1. Review applicant and incident eligibility criteria to ensure clarity of terms and conditions, as well as alignment with program intent.
  2. Enhance engagement with and outreach to organizations and associations that represent first responders and PT counterparts to increase awareness and uptake of the program. A focus on organizations and associations in rural, remote and Indigenous jurisdictions and volunteer first responders should be considered in addition to providing information on an ongoing basis and in multiple formats.
  3. Review and monitor program resources to ensure they are sufficient to support delivery, particularly in the context of expanded eligibility criteria and increasing program uptake.
  4. Review the nature and extent of performance data collected in light of current program needs and identify opportunities for further data collection opportunities to better support program reporting and management.
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