The Meritorious Service Decorations
Meritorious Service Decorations celebrate Canadians and foreigners whose accomplishments make all of us proud. These outstanding people -- athletes, soldiers, scholars, community activists -- have contributed to Canadian society, at home and abroad, through their determination, talent and excellence.
These decorations are an important part of the Canadian Honours System and, like the Order of Canada, they recognize excellence. However, Meritorious Service Decorations honour either a single achievement or an activity over a specified period, while the Order of Canada focuses on lifetime achievement.
Meritorious Service Decorations are separated into military and civilian divisions, with two levels in each category: a Cross and a Medal. The military division recognizes individuals for outstanding professionalism and for bringing honour to the Canadian Forces. The civilian division recognizes contributions to any field, from athletics to diplomatic relations to humanitarian activities. Non-Canadians can be recognized in either division.
The military Cross was created on June 11, 1984. The military Medal and the civilian Cross and Medal were created in 1991. The earliest date that a candidate can be considered for any Meritorious Service Decoration is June 11, 1984.
Commanding Officers nominate military personnel and anyone can nominate a civilian by completing a nomination form. Nomination procedures for both the civil and military divisions are explained in the Frequently Asked Questions section.
For more information, please contact the Chancellery at 1-800-465-6890.