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Campaign Guidelines

These guidelines provide for equitable, open and fair elections. They are intended to support candidates in running an effective campaign.

Communication with candidates

After the ticket of nominations is finalized, a teleconference will be arranged for the candidates. During this teleconference, candidates will be welcomed, the election guidelines will be reviewed and questions from candidates will be answered. A CNA staff member will be assigned as the key contact for candidates during the campaign.

Pre-election activities

The purpose of the pre-election activities is to assist candidates in preparing for the election, which is held during the CNA annual meeting of members in conjunction with the biennial convention.

  • Promotional materials (print and electronic) may be prepared, used and distributed according to the guidelines below.
  • The candidates will be profiled prominently on the CNA website. Information will also be provided with the annual meeting documents. The materials for each candidate for president-elect will include:
    • A photograph
    • Biographical notes (to be condensed for the ticket of nominations)
    • A statement demonstrating leadership ability (up to 200 words)
    • A contact e-mail address

The candidates and their nominators will receive the campaign guidelines and the board policy on expenses, which is referred to in these campaign guidelines below.

Guidelines for acceptable candidate promotional materials and distribution

A one-sheet flyer with English on one side and French on the other, if so desired, shall be the sole promotional material. The flyer should contain:

  • A statement of qualifications, including what expertise the candidate would bring to the elected position
  • A statement of how the candidate envisions meeting the mission and goals of CNA
  • Contact information (e.g., for obtaining the candidate’s curriculum vitae)

Flyer guidelines:

  • A photo of the candidate is optional.
  • The flyer may be printed in black and white or colour.
  • The CNA staff liaison will provide each candidate a current list of e-mail addresses of jurisdictional and specialty member executive directors, CEOs and/or presidents.
  • Candidates may e-mail a copy of the flyer to each jurisdictional member office to the attention of the executive director, CEO or president.
  • Candidates may also forward the flyer in response to requests from individuals or groups.
  • In compliance with provincial and federal privacy legislation and jurisdictional regulations, mailing lists and labels are not available for candidate promotion.
  • Distribution of the flyer shall not occur within the room where an event is occurring, but the flyer may be left at the candidates’ table or be given to attendees (including delegates) outside event meeting rooms.
  • CNA staff will provide logistical support to candidates (e.g., communication about date, time, and location of relevant meetings) and answer questions from candidates or forward them as required.

Onsite activities

The purpose of onsite activities is to:

  • Share candidates’ qualifications for the position and their potential contributions to CNA
  • Promote informed decision-making by voting delegates
  • Initiate dialogue among candidates, members and delegates

Onsite activity guidelines:

  • Candidates will be provided with an identification symbol, which must be visible and secure.
  • CNA will provide a well-lit, prominent and identified table for the candidates to share outside of the annual meeting room. The location of the table and the availability of candidates will be well advertised in the meeting agenda.
  • Candidates are encouraged to mingle with voting delegates and meeting attendees outside of the meeting room during breaks and mealtimes.
  • A member may invite the candidates to meet with their voting delegates. Members must give all candidates an equal opportunity to present themselves.
  • The candidates will be presented to the voting delegates and annual meeting attendees during a Meet the Candidates session. This session will be placed on the agenda of the meeting and early enough in the day to allow the maximum number of voting delegates to be present.
  • The guidelines of the Meet the Candidates session, described below, will be distributed with the annual meeting documents.
  • Candidates who are unable to attend the biennial convention and/or annual meeting of members can ask a representative to read their introductory message during the Meet the Candidates session according to the timeframes provided.
  • Candidates and voting delegates will be requested to submit an evaluation of the campaign process.
  • CNA will provide a contingency fund in the amount of $10,000 to support the expenses of candidates for president-elect who are nominated by November 30 or January 31 and are unable to secure adequate funding to attend the biennial convention and/or annual meeting.
    • All candidates nominated by January 31 shall declare whether they have sought funds from jurisdictions or other sources.
    • The criteria for disbursing from the contingency fund will conform with policy GP5 (Board and Volunteer Expenses). The disbursement from the fund shall be distributed equally among those candidates who were unable to secure adequate funding. Should the claims exceed the amount, only the monies allotted to the fund will be dispersed and no additional funding will be provided.

Guidelines for the Meet the Candidates session

Each candidate will have the opportunity to interact with voting delegates at a Meet the Candidates session. One of the CNA officers will preside over the session, which is held the morning of the election.

  • The speaking order of the candidates will be determined by a draw.
  • Each candidate will have 10 minutes to speak to delegates.
  • After all of the candidates have spoken, the chair will call for questions from the floor.
  • The question period will include time for three brief questions.
  • No individual in the audience may ask more than one question during the session.
  • Each candidate will have a maximum of two minutes to reply to a question.
  • The order of response to questions shall alternate from candidate to candidate so that no candidate is always the first to answer.
  • After candidates have answered the first question, the chair will call for the second question in accordance with the above sequence. The third question will be posed and answered in the same sequence.
  • The presiding officer may extend the time limit for more questions if the schedule allows.

The presiding officer has authority to:

  • Ensure the order of delegates’ questions when more than one delegate is at the microphones
  • Ensure the guidelines are met
  • Monitor the response time of candidates to ensure they do not exceed time allowances
  • Rule on which part of a two-part question will be entertained