Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s forthcoming change in “status” means they won’t be provided the same perks they’ve enjoyed as full-time royals. While the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) has been providing security assistance to the couple on an intermittent basis since last November, that will stop in the coming weeks as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex prepare to step back from royal duties. The Government of Canada confirmed the news in a statement to CBC News on Thursday.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex choosing to relocate to Canada on a part-time basis presented our government with a unique and unprecedented set of circumstances,” the Office of Public Safety Minister Bill Blair said. “The [Royal Canadian Mounted Police] has been engaged with officials in the U.K. from the very beginning regarding security. As the Duke and Duchess are currently recognized as Internationally Protected Persons, Canada has an obligation to provide security assistance on an as needed basis.” He added, "At the request of the Metropolitan Police, the RCMP has been providing assistance to the Met since the arrival of the Duke and Duchess to Canada intermittently since November 2019. The assistance will cease in the coming weeks, in keeping with their change in status."
Meghan and Harry’s royal duties will come to an end on March 31. The royal couple recently released details about their spring 2020 transition noting their need for security. “It is agreed that The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will continue to require effective security to protect them and their son. This is based on The Duke’s public profile by virtue of being born into The Royal Family, his military service, the Duchess’ own independent profile, and the shared threat and risk level documented specifically over the last few years. No further details can be shared as this is classified information for safety reasons,” a message on their website read.
With the Sussexes no longer being working members of the royal family, they will stop using “Sussex Royal” post-spring since there are specific UK government rules concerning the use of the word “royal.” Harry and Meghan reacted to the news on their site writing: “While there is not any jurisdiction by The Monarchy or Cabinet Office over the use of the word ‘Royal’ overseas, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex do not intend to use ‘Sussex Royal’ or any iteration of the word ‘Royal’ in any territory (either within the UK or otherwise) when the transition occurs Spring 2020.”
Under the terms of their agreement with the Queen, Meghan and Harry will also no longer receive public funding, nor formally represent Her Majesty. The Duke and Duchess’ “revised” roles will be reviewed after 12-months. Sussex Royal stated, “The Royal Family respect and understand the wish of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex to live a more independent life as a family, by removing the supposed ‘public interest’ justification for media intrusion into their lives. They remain a valued part of Her Majesty’s family.”