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2016 Guidelines for Use of the Lists of Electors

III. Use of the Lists of Electors

The Canada Elections Act provides specific obligations with regard to the appropriate use of the lists of electors. All authorized recipients should be familiar with the authorized use of the lists of electors and related prohibitions. They should also consult Annex D of these guidelines for frequently asked questions in regards to the authorized use of the lists of electors.

Table 2 – Authorized Use of the Lists of Electors provides an overview of the authorized uses of the lists of electors. These are further defined as follows:

a) Authorized Use by Registered Parties

Registered parties are authorized to use the lists to communicate with electors, including for the purposes of soliciting contributions and recruiting party members.

b) Authorized Use by Members of Parliament

Members of Parliament are authorized to use the lists to communicate with their electors.

If a member of Parliament is endorsed by a registered party, he or she may also use the lists of electors to solicit contributions for that party and to recruit party members within his or her electoral district.

c) Authorized Use by Candidates

Candidates are authorized to use the lists of electors to communicate with electors during an election period, including for the purposes of soliciting contributions and campaigning.

Table 2 – Authorized Use of the Lists of Electors
Authorized Recipients Types of Lists Authorized Uses Section of the Act
Registered parties
  • Annual lists
  • Preliminary lists
  • Final lists
  • Communicating with electors
  • Soliciting contributions
  • Recruiting party members
s. 110(1)
Members of Parliament
  • Annual lists
  • Final lists
  • Communicating with electors
  • If a member of a registered party, the lists can also be used for soliciting contributions for the party and recruiting party members
s. 110(2)
Candidates
  • Preliminary and updated lists
  • Revised lists
  • Official lists
  • Communicating with electors (this includes soliciting contributions and campaigning during the election period)
s. 110(3)

d) Prohibited Use

Pursuant to Section 111(f), authorized recipients of the lists of electors are prohibited to use personal information contained in the lists of electors for purposes other than those authorized by the Canada Elections Act.

Using personal information contained in the lists of electors in an unauthorized manner is a criminal offence under the Canada Elections Act. Any recipient who makes unauthorized use of the personal information recorded in the lists of electors is liable to a fine of up to $5,000, imprisonment for up to one year or both (ss. 487(1)(b) and 500(3.1)).