General Service Medal – EXPEDITION (GSM-EXP)

This general service award has been created as a means to recognize in a timelier manner those who provide direct support to operations in the presence of an armed enemy. Rather than creating a new honour for each new Canadian Forces operation as it arises, the General Campaign Star (GCS) and General Service Medal (GSM) - with their theatre or service specific ribbons - can be awarded in future to honour participation in any operation that meets the criteria.


The General Service Medal (GSM) is awarded to members of the CF and members of allied forces serving with the CF who deploy outside of Canada - but not necessarily into a theatre of operations - to provide direct support, on a full-time basis, to operations in the presence of an armed enemy.

The GSM may also be awarded, depending on the operation, to Canadian citizens other than members of the Canadian Forces, who are deployed outside Canada, either inside or outside a theatre of operations and working with the CF to provide direct support, on a full-time basis, to operations in the presence of an armed enemy.

The GSM is always issued with a ribbon specific to the theatre or type of service being recognized, and each ribbon has its own criteria.

No eligible service has been approved for the GSM with EXPEDITION ribbon as of yet.

Eligible service may be added to the eligibility list for the ribbon by the Chief of the Defence Staff in consultation with Armed Forces Council and on the recommendation of the Canadian Forces Honours Committee provided the service in question meets the basic criteria and intent of the medal as described in the regulations.

The only civilians eligible are Members of the Public Service working for the CF, Canadian civilians under contract with the CF and Canadian Police Officers serving under the authority of the CF in the locations and with the units described at the link above and between the dates indicated. Foreign civilians are not eligible for the GSM.

The only members of allied forces eligible are those who serve in missions on behalf of Canada. They are usually foreign exchange personnel who deploy with our units or personnel seconded to the CF specifically to serve in our missions. In all cases, they must be on the CFTPO filling a Canadian position and they are usually assigned a CF service number. Foreign personnel working in concert with the CF or reporting to a Canadian superior in an international context are not eligible for Canadian service medals.

Aircrew flying into the theatre accumulate one day of service for the first sortie flown on any day, additional sorties flown on the same day receive no further credit.