Transcript - Political Activities

In this video, I provide some guidance for ministers, ministers of state, parliamentary secretaries and ministerial staff on how to meet their obligations under the Conflict of Interest Act during a federal election period.

As a reporting public office holder, you remain subject to the Conflict of Interest Act during election periods, even if you are on leave without pay unless you resigned or your position was terminated. Ministers, ministers of state and ministerial staff must continue to comply with the Act's substantive provisions. And parliamentary secretaries become subject to the Act's post-employment rules as soon as the writ drops.

If you are a minister or a member of ministerial staff, you are most likely already aware that you are prohibited from engaging in certain outside activities by section 15 of the Conflict of Interest Act. However, the Act is clear that nothing in that section prohibits or restricts your political activities.

A word of caution, however: in the context of fundraisers, the Act does prohibit you from personally soliciting funds from any person or organization if doing so would place you in a conflict of interest. 

Also, other Acts of Parliament, policies or even your terms and conditions of employment may prohibit you from engaging in certain political activities. For example, Treasury Board and the Privy Council both have government guidelines on political activities that may apply to you.

Our Office does not administer these instruments and cannot give you advice on how to comply with them. So, be sure to consult the appropriate departmental officials for information and advice.

For more information on this or any other subject, please to consult our website. You may also speak directly to your advisor in our Office for advice and guidance.