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Election-Related Resources Policy

Purpose
To provide direction to Idea Exchange Board members, staff and volunteers on the administration of organizational resources with respect to election-related matters.

Principle
Public funds are not to be used for any election-related purposes, including the promotion of or opposition to the candidacy of a person for elected office.

Policy Scope and Purpose
The organization must act and appear to act in a non-partisan way at all times, but especially during elections, while supporting the democratic process, freedom of expression and informed discussion on political issues. The organization must comply with legislation related to elections. These regulations are included in the Municipal Elections Act, 1996 as amended by Bill 181, the Municipal Elections Modernization Act, 2016.  Specifically, Clause 88.18 Use of municipal, board resources states:

Before May 1 in the year of a regular election, municipalities and local boards shall establish rules and procedures with respect to the use of municipal or board resources, as the case may be, during the election campaign period.

This policy applies to Board members, employees and volunteers of Idea Exchange in their dealings with candidates and political parties and the use of library and gallery resources during the campaign periods for municipal elections, but these rules and procedures will also be used for provincial and federal elections.

Campaign Contributions
In accordance with the Municipal Elections Act, Section 70(4), the Elections Finances Act, Section 16(1), and Canada Elections Act, Section 404(1), the Board may not make a contribution to the campaign of any candidate or political party in the form of money, goods or services.

Use of Idea Exchange Resources and Property

  1. All candidates and political parties have equal access to publicly available resources and services of the library and gallery.
  1. Candidates cannot use equipment, supplies, staff or other operational resources of the library and gallery nor may they use the Idea Exchange logo in any campaign material.  
  1. All-candidates meetings can be held at Idea Exchange, either as a program or sponsored by another group, provided that all candidates are invited to attend such meetings. A candidate cannot be featured or promoted in association with any other regular Idea Exchange program or event.
  1. In accordance with the Canada Elections Act section 81.1(1), federal election candidates or their representatives are allowed to campaign in facilities that are available for free to the public. During municipal and provincial elections candidates will be granted the same right to campaign at Idea Exchange locations.
  1. No campaign materials will be allowed on the Idea Exchange premises.  Idea Exchange will promote awareness of the election; and provide general information on elections.
  1. No election sign or poster specific to a candidate or political party can be posted on the grounds of Idea Exchange or in the Idea Exchange buildings.

Employee and Volunteer Participation in Election Campaigns

  1. Any Idea Exchange employee running as a candidate in the municipal election will comply with Section 30 of the Municipal Elections Act.
  1. Any Idea Exchange employee or volunteer involved in a political campaign must be politically neutral in carrying out his or her duties during working hours and must not participate in campaign activities during his or her working hours.

Board Members as Candidates
Board members may continue their board responsibilities when they are running for office.

Requests for information about Idea Exchange

  1. The CEO will coordinate requests for information about the library and gallery received from candidates or political parties.
  2. Information that is provided by Idea Exchange to one candidate or political party will be provided to all other candidates and political parties upon request during an election.

Adopted: April 25, 2018
Board Motion: 18.37