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Community Safety and Policing Act, 2019

ONTARIO REGULATION 402/23

POLITICAL ACTIVITY

Consolidation Period: From December 18, 2023 to the e-Laws currency date.

Note: THIS REGULATION IS NOT YET IN FORCE. It comes into force on April 1, 2024, the day paragraph 31 of subsection 261 (1) of Schedule 1 (Community Safety and Policing Act, 2019) to the Comprehensive Ontario Police Services Act, 2019 comes into force.

No amendments.

This is the English version of a bilingual regulation.

CONTENTS

PART I
APPLICATION AND INTERPRETATION

1.

Non-application to extra-provincial police officers

2.

Interpretation

PART II
POLICE SERVICES MAINTAINED BY POLICE SERVICE BOARDS

3.

Application

Political Activities

4.

Political rights

5.

Permitted activities while off-duty

6.

Permitted on-duty activities

7.

Appointments, etc.

Candidacy for Election

8.

Application, ss. 9, 10 and 11

9.

Candidacy for election

10.

Resignation upon election

11.

Effect of absence on length of service

PART III
ONTARIO PROVINCIAL POLICE

12.

Political activity for member of O.P.P.

 

Part I
Application and Interpretation

Non-application to extra-provincial police officers

1. This Regulation does not apply with respect to police officers appointed under the Interprovincial Policing Act, 2009.

Interpretation

2. In this Regulation,

“political organization” means a political party or any other organization engaged in political activity.

Part II
Police Services Maintained by Police Service Boards

Application

3. In this Part,

(a)  a reference to a police service is a reference to a police service maintained by a police service board; and

(b)  a reference to a police officer is a reference to a police officer who is a member of a police service maintained by a police service board.

Political Activities

Political rights

4. A police officer may,

(a)  vote in an election;

(b)  be a member of a political organization or be an officer or director or otherwise participate in the leadership of a political organization; and

(c)  make contributions of money or goods to,

(i)  a political organization, or

(ii)  a candidate in an election.

Permitted activities while off-duty

5. (1) A police officer may engage in any political activity if the officer is off-duty and not in uniform, except that the officer may not,

(a)  express views on any issues directly related to the police officer’s responsibility as a police officer;

(b)  associate any of the police officer’s views with the police officer’s position or represent those views as those of a police service;

(c)  solicit or receive funds, including doing so on behalf of a political organization or on behalf of a candidate in an election; or

(d)  engage in any political activity that would place or be likely to place the police officer in a position of conflict of interest.

(2) Without limiting the generality of subsection (1) and subject to the restrictions set out in that subsection, a police officer may,

(a)  attend and participate in a public meeting, including,

(i)  a meeting with elected representatives or government officials, or

(ii)  a meeting with candidates in an election;

(b)  attend and participate in a meeting or convention of a political organization;

(c)  canvass on behalf of a political organization, or on behalf of a candidate in an election;

(d)  act as a scrutineer for a candidate in an election; and

(e)  on the polling day of an election, transport electors to a polling place on behalf of a candidate.

Permitted on-duty activities

6. If authorized to do so by the chief of police or, in the case of the chief of police, the police service board, a police officer may, on behalf of a police service,

(a)  express views on any issue, as long as the police officer does not, during an election campaign, express views supporting or opposing,

(i)  a candidate in the election or a political party that has nominated a candidate in the election, or

(ii)  a position taken by a candidate in the election or by a political party that has nominated a candidate in the election; and

(b)  attend and participate in a public meeting, subject to the restrictions set out in clause (a).

Appointments, etc.

7. (1) In this section,

“local board” means a local board as defined in section 1 of the Municipal Affairs Act, other than a police service board.

(2) Unless doing so would interfere with the police officer’s duties as a police officer or place or be likely to place the police officer in a position of conflict of interest, a police officer may,

(a)  be a candidate for election to a local board, be appointed to a local board or serve on a local board; and

(b)  engage in political activity related to the candidacy, appointment or service.

Candidacy for Election

Application, ss. 9, 10 and 11

8. Sections 9, 10 and 11 do not apply with respect to a chief of police or a deputy chief of police.

Candidacy for election

9. (1) Unless on a leave of absence granted under subsection (4), a police officer may not seek to become or be a candidate in,

(a)  a federal or provincial election;

(b)  an election for band council; or

(c)  an election for municipal council.

(2) A police officer who seeks to become a candidate in an election mentioned in subsection (1) shall apply to the police service board for a leave of absence without pay.

(3) Despite subsections (1) and (2), a police officer may seek to become a candidate or may be a candidate in an election for band council or an election for municipal council without taking a leave of absence if,

(a)  the police service board that employs the police officer does not provide police services within,

(i)  the relevant First Nation reserve, in the case of an election for band council, or

(ii)  the relevant municipality, in the case of an election for municipal council; and

(b)  seeking to become or being a candidate does not interfere with the police officer’s duties and does not place, or is not likely to place, the police officer in a position of conflict of interest.

(4) Regardless of whether a leave of absence is required under this section, a police service board shall grant any leave of absence without pay that a police officer requests if the leave is to enable the police officer to seek to become a candidate or to be a candidate in an election mentioned in subsection (1).

(5) The leave of absence granted to a police officer under subsection (4) shall begin and end on the date specified in the police officer’s application, subject to the following restrictions:

1.  A leave of absence to be a candidate in an election mentioned in subsection (1) may not begin earlier than,

i.  the day on which the police officer is nominated as a candidate, in the case of a leave for an election for band council or an election for municipal council, or

ii.  the day on which the writ for the election is issued, in the case of a leave for a federal or provincial election.

2.  The latest day on which a leave of absence to be a candidate in a federal or provincial election may begin is the last day for nominating candidates under the applicable provincial statute or the Canada Elections Act.

3.  No leave of absence may continue after,

i.  the day on which the police officer withdraws from or loses the nomination campaign, or

ii.  polling day, if the police officer wins the nomination.

Resignation upon election

10. (1) Subject to subsection (2), a police officer who is elected in a federal or provincial election, an election for band council or an election for municipal council shall immediately resign as a police officer.

(2) A police officer elected in an election for band council or an election for municipal council is not required to resign if,

(a)  the police service board that employs the police officer does not provide police services within,

(i)  the relevant First Nation reserve, in the case of an election for band council, or

(ii)  the relevant municipality, in the case of an election for municipal council; and

(b)  being a member of the municipal council or the band council would not interfere with the police officer’s duties or place, or be likely to place, the police officer in a position of conflict of interest.

(3) A police officer who is elected in an election for municipal council and who, as permitted by subsection (2), does not resign as a police officer shall not,

(a)  take part at any meeting of the municipal council in the discussion of, or vote on, any question relating to the budget for a police service board under section 50 of the Act; and

(b)  attempt in any way, whether before, during or after a meeting of the municipal council, to influence the voting on any such question.

(4) Subject to the restrictions on being appointed a police officer set out in section 83 of the Act, a former police officer who resigns as required by subsection (1) and who later ceases to hold the elected position that led the officer to resign is entitled to be appointed to any vacant position for which the former officer is qualified on the police service of the former officer if the former officer,

(a)  ceased to hold the elected position within five years after resigning as a police officer; and

(b)  makes an application to be reappointed to the police service within 12 months after ceasing to hold the elected position.

(5) Another person’s right to be appointed or assigned to a position on a police service by virtue of a collective agreement prevails over the right conferred by subsection (4).

Effect of absence on length of service

11. (1) The period of a leave of absence granted under subsection 9 (4) shall not be counted in determining the length of the police officer’s service, but the service before and after the period of leave shall be deemed to be continuous for all purposes.

(2) Subsection (1) applies, with necessary modifications, to a police officer who has resigned and subsequently been reappointed to the police service in accordance with subsection 10 (4).

Part III
Ontario Provincial Police

Political activity for member of O.P.P.

12. No member of the Ontario Provincial Police shall contravene or fail to comply with any provision in Part V (Political Activity) of the Public Service of Ontario Act, 2006.

Part IV (OMITTED)

13. Omitted (provides for coming into force of provisions of this Regulation).

 

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