Canvassing code of practice

This Code of Practice sets out the manner in which all candidates for elected College and Faculty roles are required to conduct canvassing.  
It is essential that, in the interests of clarity and to provide a fair process for all candidates, while also encouraging informed participation, the Code is fully complied with. 
Canvassing by candidates is allowed, subject to compliance at all times with the terms and conditions of this Code. Candidates may be liable to disqualification from the election by the RCR Returning Officer if found to be in breach of terms of this Code.
Canvassing by way of social media is allowed, subject to adherence to the RCR’s values and social media policy.  
Canvassing by email or telephone is allowed with adherence to the General Data Protection Regulation. Candidates should ensure they use personal data such as telephone numbers and email addresses responsibly by holding data securely and not sharing data without consent from the individual. While candidates can canvass by email, they should avoid unsolicited mailings to large groups of people, or mailing too many times to people – in most circumstances twice should be the limit (exceptions being, for example, that you are responding to questions).
The RCR does not provide funding for candidates' canvassing campaigns. 
The Officers of the RCR shall remain impartial during the nomination and election period for all College and Faculty elections. They are not permitted to act as nominators for candidates or participate in canvassing, directly or indirectly, by expressing support or disapproval of a particular candidate. 
The following restrictions apply to canvassing by candidates: 
(a) candidates must at all times maintain the confidentiality, integrity and good standing of the election and its process and the RCR, and not bring the election or the RCR itself into disrepute.
Candidates must not:
(b) use, or have any access to, databases or mailing lists held by the RCR. They cannot use databases or mailing lists obtained through their work with the RCR for any purpose connected to the elections; 
(c) use any RCR email address, RCR social media accounts, branding or stationery or any RCR resources such as RCR publications to conduct canvassing; 
(d) conduct any canvassing through the national media or press, and nor should any comments or responses about the election be made to journalists, the national media or press by candidates, including responding to the press through social media;
(e) engage agents or other third parties to act for them in the conduct of their canvassing; 
(f) make any adverse comment about, or make reference to, another candidate's personal election statement, any video or audio recordings made pursuant to this Code, nor to another candidate's canvassing campaign generally; 
(g) approach Officers of the RCR to seek endorsement;
(h) approach any RCR Fellow or member to seek engagement in any activity on their behalf that may contravene this Code. Any RCR Fellow or member that undertakes such activity on the behalf of a candidate will be subject to investigation by the RCR Returning Officer. 
The RCR Returning Officer reserves the right to determine whether or not a candidate is complying with this Code, and to take appropriate steps. 
The RCR Returning Officer will investigate all alleged breaches of the Code and issue informal warnings, formal written warnings and cease and desist requests as deemed appropriate. Candidates may be liable to disqualification from the election by the RCR Returning Officer if found to be in breach of terms of this Code. 
The Code is mandatory for all candidates, and the RCR reserves the right to amend its terms and conditions as it sees fit. 
The decision of the RCR Returning Officer on all matters relating to the Code shall be final and binding on all candidates. 

Approved by Council in November 2020