Celebrating Pride Month with Sergeant Cloutier

News Article / July 20, 2021

Sgt Carole Cloutier is an RCAF Human Resources Administrator (HRA) at Canadian Armed Recruiting Group HQ Borden, a proud mother of three, and an active member of the Pride Network Committee at Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Borden.

In her role as an HRA, Sgt Cloutier ensures that member’s personnel files are kept updated and provides administration-related support to members of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF).

At 35 years of age and a single mother, Sgt Cloutier joined the CAF as a way of providing a stable life and steady income for her children. It was around this time, that she also began identifying as Lesbian.

“I am proud of who I am,” says Sgt Cloutier. She attributes a large part of this to her children, who were fully accepting and reveled in telling all their friends how proud they were of their Mom. “They used to say ‘Here’s my Mom and she’s gay!’ when their friends would come over. My kids are absolutely incredible.” 

As the co-chair of the Borden Pride Network Committee, Sgt Cloutier meets regularly with the Borden Pride Network Champion LCol Bishop. She is particularly pleased with the support they have received at CFB Borden & the Junior Ranks Mess while planning fun events for the LGBTQ2+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning + Two Spirited) community and their families.

Sgt Cloutier sees first-hand how important the Pride Network is for local CAF members. “We are there for our community, not as counsellors, but we coordinate events and refer members for help if they or their families need support,” says Sgt Cloutier. “LGBTQ2+ members and their families needing help can call their local Pride Network. They are also entitled to the same benefits and services as all other CAF members.”

When asked about her experiences as a CAF member who identifies as LGBTQ2+, Sgt Cloutier says, “The CAF has been very welcoming and accepting to me and my family. Except for a few old school types, I have had great support and acceptance.

“We are the same as anyone else. We don’t want special treatment; in fact, I would love to see the day when we can all just live and work together as members and families. We’ve come a long, long way and I’m proud of the work we’ve done so far.”

Sgt Cloutier says that the Defence Team Pride Advisory Organization stood up on 17 May 2021 which has impacted the CAF from coast to coast; Pride flags were raised on most bases in Canada. She says it is bittersweet! She says she would also love to offer her services to help RCAF senior leadership create support services of some kind for LGBTQ2+ members and their families.

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