Convention 2017: Guidelines for FT Officer and Exec VP Candidates' Election Campaigns

January 10, 2017

1. No funds or assistance in kind will be contributed from the Union, Components, Locals or Cross Component Committees other than that specified in the guidelines. There will be no Component hospitality suites during Convention.

2. Declared candidates will have an opportunity to have a picture and a personal statement of no more than 1,000 words in a special election issue of The Provincial. Declared candidates will have an opportunity to have a picture and a personal statement of no more than 1,000 words on the BCGEU website. Appropriate notices to potential candidates will be announced in The Provincial and on the website. Information regarding how members declare their candidacy, as well as the guidelines in this policy, will be provided to members on the website and in the last issue of The Provincial in the year preceding the Constitutional Convention and again in the March issue of the Convention year.

NOTE: Deadline for submission of biography and high resolution head and shoulders photo: Friday, February 24, 2017. Please email to: convention2017@bcgeu.ca

3. Following The Provincial deadline as set for the personal statements by candidates for either full-time Officer, or for the Executive Vice President positions, the President will notify the Provincial Executive and the Cross Component Committee Chairs of the declared candidates and the offices they seek. Within ten days of that notice, the date for webcast(s) will be announced by Union Headquarters to include declared candidates for full-time Officer and Executive Vice-President positions. The webcast(s) will be chaired by a person agreed to by all candidates. Leave of absence and travel expenses for declared candidates only will be paid by Union Headquarters. Administrative assistance for the scheduling and conduct of the all-candidates' webcast(s) will be provided by the Union.

4. If Components wish to invite declared candidates for full-time Officer and Executive Vice-President positions to address a Component Executive meeting, or a Component caucus at Convention, they must invite all candidates who have declared their candidacy for the same position in the Provincial candidate statement issue, and pay related expenses.

5. Local Executive and convention delegates' mailing addresses, telephone and email addresses will be given to candidates for the exclusive purpose of the election campaign and candidates will be asked to sign a statement to that effect.

6. Photocopying at BCGEU offices will be available for candidates to a maximum of 2,000 copies, double-sided in black and white. Copying will be done by Union support staff. Envelopes, labels and postage will be provided by the Union for one all-delegate mailing by the candidate. If the candidate desires, support staff may run the envelopes through the Union’s postage meter. Such requests, as well as requests for photocopying, will be made through a servicing staff representative.

7. Campaign expenditures by each candidate are not to exceed $2,250 in cash or in-kind contributions (value of material goods provided), in addition to those provided for in points 3, and 6. All claims must be receipted. In-kind contributions are counted as expenses and must be accompanied by a statement confirming fair market value. Candidates shall be reimbursed for $750 of the $2,250 maximum expenditure.

8. No money is to be solicited or accepted from outside organizations or any sources external to the Union.

9. Within sixty (60) days after the Convention, a statement of campaign expenditures will be submitted by each candidate to the Provincial Executive. Candidates will be asked to use the electronic form available from the Finance Department.

10. There shall be no staff involvement in the political process. If there are any allegations of staff interference, the complaint should be made in writing to the President who will initiate due process and take action if warranted. Elected members shall not initiate involvement of staff in the political process. Should staff have complaints, they shall make them in writing to the appropriate Director who will refer them to the President for due process and action if warranted. Staff will be advised by the President of each candidate at the time that they announce their candidacy.

11. No candidate shall produce or make statements that will bring disrepute on the Union, other candidates or its members.

12. Campaigns will be kept internal and candidates will not seek out the media as a means of communicating with the membership or have the media present at all candidate meetings, nor will outside endorsements be permitted for a specific position.

13. During Convention, the following rules will apply:
(a) No posters in the hall will be permitted. Posters to be posted outside the hall will be dealt with by the Sergeant-at-Arms Committee.
(b) Buttons and leaflets must be distributed outside the hall.
(c) Equipment will be provided for candidates by Union Headquarters for display of electronic campaign material outside the hall.
(d) Honoured guests as appointed by the President will form the balloting committee.
(e) Each candidate can appoint up to two (2) scrutineers for the ballot count.
(f) The President will request an honoured guest or life member to chair the elections.
(g) Candidates will have a total of five (5) minutes to address voting delegates from the Convention stage. Nominators will speak from the floor and limit their remarks to nominate their candidate. Should the candidate wish their nominator to speak for them, the nominator will have the opportunity to do so later, after the nomination is accepted, from the Convention stage.

14. Any campaign materials that are accessible by the general public (e.g. websites) or produced for distribution at Convention, must include the following statement: “This is a publication of (name), candidate for office at the BCGEU convention. It is not an official publication of the BCGEU. Views expressed are those of the candidate”. No campaign materials will use the BCGEU logo.

15. A candidate workshop will be provided for declared candidates prior to the candidate webcast(s).

Download pdf version of the guidelines