Campaign Guidelines to be Issued – COVID-19
Political Campaign Guidelines – COVID-19
I know that some of you are wondering how best to conduct political campaigns in light of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). This greatly affects you, as Chief Official Agents, but it also impacts your candidates and their business managers, local volunteers and so on. To be frank, finding best practice on how to conduct a political campaign during a pandemic is new ground for parties around the world. In Canada, Saskatchewan is the first jurisdiction to undertake a major election – others from across the country will be looking to us for guidance and lessons learned.
Consistent with my recent recommendations on the coming election, I am currently working with Dr. Saqib Shahab, Saskatchewan’s Chief Medical Health Officer, to develop and publish a set of guidelines for how the possibility of transmitting COVID-19 can be mitigated during a political campaign. These guidelines will discuss common campaign activities and how they need to be altered because of this pandemic. The basis for the guidelines will be the Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan and the instructions contained within it – including limitations on gathering size, restricted activities, and so on.
These guidelines are currently being developed and I expect that they will be ready within the month, if not sooner. Given the uncertainty surrounding what the future holds in regard to COVID-19, the guidelines may very well be a “living document” that is updated in the lead up to our October 26 general election. As always, I will keep you well informed of their status if changes are made. If you have comments or suggestions on content, please send these to me right away and I will work to accommodate them.
Annual Returns Posted to Website
Just a short note to let you know that audited annual returns for all registered political parties have been posted “As Filed” to our website. They can be found at https://www.elections.sk.ca/ candidates-political-parties/electoral-finance/ by clicking on “Reports and Data.”
Dr. Michael Boda
Chief Electoral Officer
Province of Saskatchewan