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ARCHIVED - Government Communications Policy - Archived version of 1996


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Effective Date

The present document contains the entire text of the policy as revised November 28, 1996 and replaces the version dated May 1, 1995

Policy objective

The objective of this policy is to ensure the effective management of government communications.

Policy statement

The responsibility to provide information is inseparable from the nature of representative government.

Adequate information is essential in order that the public-individually or through representative groups or members of Parliament-may understand, respond to and influence the development and implementation of government policies and programs.

The free flow of information between the government and the public should be carried out through both formal and informal exchanges, in a dialogue that is continuous, open, relevant, understandable and reliable.

Good communications is fundamental to the achievement of government objectives. Communications planning, coordination and execution are an integral part of the management process of government.

Therefore, it is the policy of the government:

- to provide information to the public about its policies, programs and services that is accurate, complete, objective, timely, relevant and understandable;

- to take into account the concerns and views of the public in establishing priorities, developing policies and implementing programs; and

- to ensure that the government is visible, accessible and answerable to the public that it serves.

Application

This policy applies to all government departments and agencies in schedules I and II of the Financial Administration Act and to branches designated as departments for the purposes of the Act.

The communications function

Communications is a management function which ensures that the public receives information about government policies, programs and services, and that the concerns and interests of the public are taken into account in the formulation and implementation of government policies and programs. It includes:

- communications research and analysis, which examines the public environment to assess public wants, needs, perceptions and understandings with respect to policies and programs, and evaluates communications programs and projects against planned objectives and professional standards;

- communications advice, which counsels ministers and management on policy development, program planning and implementation, and public issues;

- communications planning, which develops corporate and program communications plans responding to public concerns and integrating major objectives of the government, the minister and the institution; and

- management of communications, which applies the principles and practices of good management to the coordination of research and analysis, to advice and planning, and to the implementation of communications programs and activities.

Assertive approach. Institutions are to take an assertive approach to communications, particularly with respect to media relations. Communicators are expected to be assertive in the advice and support provided to ministers, deputy heads and program managers.

Internal communications. Principles set out in this policy should also be applied to internal communications, where appropriate.

Policy requirements

1. Service to the public

Institutions must provide the public with prompt, courteous and impartial service that is sensitive to its needs, responsive to its concerns, and protective of its rights.

2. Management and coordination

Institutions are responsible for integrating communications into the corporate management process. They must:

(a) ensure that communications staff, policy advisors and program managers carry out their shared roles in and responsibilities for the management and implementation of government communications;

(b) ensure an appropriate distribution of resources between headquarters and regions in all communications planning and management;

(c) prepare a strategic communications plan, in conjunction with their Multi-Year Operational Plan, integrating governmental, ministerial and institutional priorities;

(d) prepare an operational communications plan that translates strategies into activities and identifies resource requirements within the operational budget;

(e) ensure that accountability is assigned for the approval of all communications projects;

(f) inform the Privy Council Office of any major adjustments to plans during the course of the fiscal year;

(g) assess the public environment in relation to policies, programs and major initiatives, and adhere to legal, policy and procedural requirements that apply to public opinion research and other forms of government information collection;

(h) monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of communications activities in relation to the objectives stated in communications plans;

(i) seek the advice of the Communications and Consultations Secretariat of the Privy Council Office on issues that may have government-wide implications or require coordination;

(j) designate a single focus of responsibility for communications with the public when developing contingency plans for crisis management;

(k) balance their own communications, public opinion research and advertising needs with the requirements of the government as a whole, and ensure that work undertaken in these areas advances the policy interests of the government.

(i) communications contracts can be used to purchase products and services designed to publicize and explain government policies and programs.

(ii) public opinion research contracts can be used to:

  • collect data that the government needs to do its job;
  • evaluate program effectiveness;
  • test the utility and user-friendliness of government publications and advertisements; and
  • collect the views of Canadians and incorporate them into the policy process of government.

(iii) advertising contracts can be used to purchase products and services designed to publicize and explain government policies and programs to Canadians. They can also be used, within limits, to pursue public policy objectives. However, such activity should occur only as part of a more comprehensive strategy that has Cabinet approval.

(iv) advertising contracts cannot be used to promote the image and awareness of individual departments; and

(l) ensure that work undertaken in communications, public opinion research and advertising demonstrates the government's commitment to fiscal responsibility.

(i) contracts will be issued only when there is a clear need for the service and when no less costly alternative is available.

(ii) departments are encouraged to work together so they can share results, avoid duplication and reduce costs.

3. Availability and dissemination of information

Institutions are responsible for ensuring that information about federal policies, programs and services is made available or disseminated in all regions of Canada. Institutions must:

(a) respond as fully as possible to public enquiries, without unnecessary recourse to the Access to Information Act or Privacy Act;

(b) designate primary spokespersons to communicate with the public, the media and members of Parliament;

(c) maintain an index of published material or material available for purchase, and ensure that published material is available for examination by the public;

(d) make information available for purchase by the public where appropriate, and consider the costs of preparing and producing the information when assessing fees to users;

(e) reduce or waive fees or charges for information where there is a clear duty to inform the public as defined in this chapter;

(f) notify the Canada Communication Group-Publishing (CCG-P) of publications that they plan to produce, and where CCG-P and institutions agree that a publication should be priced, arrange to have it published through CCG-P, copublishing with the private sector wherever possible;

(g) coordinate advertising and public opinion research strategies through Public Works and Government Services Canada. Institutions must pre-test all significant advertising campaigns to ensure that they meet their stated objectives; and

(h) make every effort to disclose results, outside the formal resolution process prescribed by the Access to Information Act, of public opinion research. In the spirit of the Access to Information Act, institutions are encouraged to make the final report of public opinion research available within 30 days of receipt, and should only resort to the 90-day allowance if constrained by publishing requirements.

In those cases where a minister elects not to disclose the final report in response to an access to information request, the minister must send a letter to the Information Commissioner informing the Information Commissioner of his or her decision and citing the provision(s) of the Access to Information Act that the minister has exercised. A copy of the letter will be sent to Treasury Board for purposes of monitoring implementation of this policy.

Requests for public opinion research results received under the Access to Information Act will continue to be treated in accordance with the Act.

4. Official languages

Institutions must respect the equality of status of the two official languages as established by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Official Languages Act and adhere to Treasury Board policies and guidelines derived therefrom.

5. Presentation and visibility

Institutions must:

(a) pursue fair communications practices by avoiding sexual stereotyping in their communications, by ensuring representative depiction of all members of Canadian society, and by taking all reasonable measures to communicate effectively with disabled persons and with members of multicultural communities; and

(b) ensure federal visibility by identifying their programs, activities and facilities in accordance with the Federal Identity Program, and, where appropriate, by arranging public events to mark significant federal initiatives or contributions.

Accountability

Under the Canadian parliamentary system, ministers are accountable to the Prime Minister and to Parliament for presenting to the public the policies, programs and priorities relating to their responsibilities.

Deputy heads are accountable to their ministers, for ensuring that their minister's communications priorities and requirements are met; to the Secretary of the Treasury Board, for implementing communications policies within their institutions; and to the Clerk of the Privy Council, for ensuring that communications fully reflect government-wide policies, themes and priorities, and that institutional communications are fully integrated into the development, planning and implementation of policies and programs.

Heads of communications (see Appendix A for a definition) are accountable to deputy heads for managing the communications function in institutions.

Policy advisors and program managers are accountable to their superiors for the communications components of their policy and program responsibilities.

Roles and responsibilities

Institutions

Ministers, not only individually but collectively as Cabinet, are the primary spokespersons for the Government of Canada. It is their role to provide leadership in establishing the priorities and overall themes of government communications. In addition, ministers:

- define the communications responsibilities of ministerial staff;

- establish clear lines of authority within ministerial staff;

- establish procedures for liaison between institutional communications managers and ministerial staff to ensure that the communication of policy and operational initiatives is coordinated, with particular reference to media relations and participation in public events; and

- define, together with their respective deputy heads, their communications priorities, objectives and requirements.

Deputy heads are responsible for, and must be seen to be in charge of, the management of communications and its integration with the institution's management to achieve government objectives. Communications is a shared role, requiring cooperation among senior management, the communications staff, policy advisors and program managers in policy and program development and delivery.

In this regard, deputy heads shall:

- designate a senior official (referred to herein as head of communications) to support the deputy head in coordinating and directing implementation of this policy;

- strike an appropriate balance of communications roles and responsibilities among communications staff, policy advisors and program managers;

- ensure the integration of strategic communications planning within the overall planning of the institution;

- ensure the development of an annual operational communications plan;

- ensure appropriate distribution of resources between headquarters and regions in all communications planning and management;

- designate managers and specialists at headquarters and in the regions to serve as primary spokespersons in relations with the public, the media and members of Parliament on subjects in their area of expertise;

- ensure that communications staff and spokespersons are afforded the training and professional development required; and

- ensure liaison and cooperation in communications matters with other federal institutions and central agencies and with other levels of government.

Communications staff provides support to the institution in achieving corporate objectives, developing policies and programs, assessing major issues and determining the institution's response. In allocating resources to communications, institutions should ensure a balance of professional resources among the principal elements of the communications function: research and analysis; advice; planning; and management of communications.

Policy advisors and program managers must participate actively in communications planning and execution. Their participation flows from their accountability for the communications components of their policy or program responsibilities, and applies particularly to identifying clients and assessing their concerns and information needs in policy and program development; facilitating the planning and implementation of communications initiatives; allocating resources for communications within the program budget; establishing effective relationships with the media; and interacting with the public.

Central agencies

The role of the Privy Council Office is:

- to support the communications strategies of Cabinet;

- to advise institutions of the government's priorities and themes that are to be reflected in their strategic communications planning;

- to provide federal institutions with advice and support in their planning and management of communications;

- to collect and analyze information on the public environment in order to advise the Prime Minister, ministers and institutions on the management of public issues;

- to monitor the implementation of Cabinet direction on communications;

- to coordinate, in exceptional circumstances, the organization and execution of major communications strategies;

- to facilitate the exchange of information among institutions;

- to provide government-wide leadership for the communications community; and

- to designate lead agencies to develop standards in accordance with government policy on communications for the approval of Treasury Board.

The Treasury Board is responsible for the approval and promulgation of policy on communications pursuant to the direction of Cabinet. On behalf of the Treasury Board, Treasury Board Secretariat is responsible for ensuring effective expenditure management and determining human resource requirements, including those of the communications function, and, in conjunction with the Privy Council Office, for monitoring the implementation of this policy. In addition, Treasury Board Secretariat is directly responsible for coordinating the implementation of the Federal Identity Program.

The Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada is delegated by Cabinet with the responsibility for ensuring the integrity of the contracting process for certain advertising services and public opinion research, and communications services for which it is the contracting authority. The Minister also provides advice and services to ensure consistency with overall government policies and priorities. Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) coordinates its activities with the Privy Council Office and Treasury Board Secretariat. The Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada provides to the Treasury Board, as required, information and advice on allocations of expenditures for contracts awarded in the areas of advertising and public opinion research so that it may ensure that annual expenditure targets are met. Policy direction is the responsibility of the Privy Council Office, Treasury Board Secretariat and PWGSC.

The Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada may delegate authority for the management of government advertising and public opinion research.

The Public Service Commission of Canada is responsible for the development and promulgation of standards to ensure that communications personnel are selected in accordance with the essential requirements of the communications function, for the selection and appointment of communications personnel in the Executive Group, for the training of spokespersons, and for the orientation and training of communications staff.

The Canada Communication Group-Publishing is responsible for the provision of communications services, when requested by government institutions, in accordance with section 7 of Application of the policy. In addition, CCG-P operates a telephone referral service, the Depository Services Program, and fulfils other requirements, as directed by the Prime Minister or Cabinet.

Monitoring

Institutions will be assessed on their degree of compliance with this policy. Strategic and operational communications plans should be used to ensure compliance with this policy. Evaluation of communications projects should be used to assess these projects' effectiveness in meeting the requirements of this policy.

The Privy Council Office will monitor the implementation of Cabinet direction on communications through strategic and operational communications plans, and through liaison with institutions.

The Treasury Board Secretariat will monitor compliance with all aspects of this policy through communications plans, reports available from other central agencies, and internal audit reports.

Internal audit groups of institutions should include in their audits of communications activities an assessment of the degree of compliance with this policy.

References

Authority

This policy is issued under the authority of Section 7 of the Financial Administration Act.

Treasury Board Secretariat publications

"Access to Information" volume, Treasury Board Manual

"Privacy and Data Protection" volume, Treasury Board Manual

Common Services Policy, "Materiel, Risk and Common Services" volume of the Treasury Board Manual

"Contracting" volume of the Treasury Board Manual

Federal Identity Program, "Communications" volume, of the Treasury Board Manual

Federal Identity Program Manual

Policy on Management of Government Information Holdings, "Information Management" volume, Treasury Board Manual

Guide to User Fees

Alternative formats - Access for all

How to provide Alternative formats

Government of Canada Internet Guide

Planning Information Products: effective, no-frills publishing practices

Other publications

Prime Minister's Guidelines on Communications with the Public (1984)-Prime Minister's Office

Memoranda to Cabinet: A Drafter's Guide, Privy Council Office

Crisis Management (1989), Privy Council Office

Enquiries

All enquiries about this chapter should be directed to the Head of Communications of the institution concerned.

For policy interpretation, the Head of Communications should contact the Information, Communications and Security Policy Division, Chief Information Officer Branch, Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat.

Application of the policy

1. Service to the public

Communications is more than simply providing or receiving information. It also concerns the manner in which that information is exchanged. The quality of the transaction has an impact on the usefulness of the information as well as on public perception of the government.

To establish an acceptable standard of service, institutions must ensure that:

- information about federal services, programs and facilities is readily available in a complete, clear and useful form;

- government facilities are readily identifiable and are accessible within reasonably justifiable limits;

- service is prompt and efficient and offered with all due regard for the privacy, safety, convenience, comfort and special needs of the public;

- they respect the constitutional right of the public to be served in English or French from their head or central office, or from any other of their offices where there is a significant demand for services in such language, or where the nature of the office makes it reasonable that services be provided in both official languages;

- information is available on the standard of service to be provided;

- mechanisms exist for lodging complaints in confidence;

- commitments made to the public are honoured and any inability to do so is promptly and clearly explained;

- treatment of the public is courteous and fair at all times; and

- quality of service to the public is monitored as part of the program review cycle.

2. Management of communications

2.1 Planning and resource management

Annual communications planning must be fully integrated into the corporate planning cycle of an institution. The planning process establishes the range of communications activities and the need for resources.

Strategic planning is the first phase in the process. Strategic communications plans link governmental, ministerial and institutional priorities, which are the basis for all communications activity, and lay out the broad parameters of action for the future.

Operational communications plans translate corporate strategies into activities and identify resource requirements.

All plans are to be developed with provision for monitoring and evaluation, and for adjustment to changing circumstances.

2.1.1 Planning cycle

(a) July

The Privy Council Office provides guidance, when appropriate, on the government-wide planning environment to be reflected in the institution's Strategic Communications Plan for the following fiscal year.

(b) September

Each institution prepares its Strategic Communications Plan for the upcoming fiscal year in conjunction with the Multi-Year Operational Plan (MYOP) to ensure that resource planning for communications is undertaken as an integral part of overall resource planning.

The institution's Strategic Communications Plan is a succinct statement of its approach for the coming year and includes expected resource requirements and anticipated revenues. The plan articulates overall communications objectives integrating governmental, ministerial and institutional priorities, and gives broad direction for the development of operational communications plans and the allocation of communications resources.

Following approval by the deputy head, an institution listed in Appendix B makes its plan available to the Privy Council Office, for review by Cabinet. Institutions not listed in the schedule submit plans to the Communications and Consultations Secretariat of the Privy Council Office, if they anticipate that new communications initiatives directly affecting government priorities will be undertaken during the upcoming year.

(c) March

Each institution prepares an Operational Communications Plan to indicate how its Strategic Communications Plan is to be implemented. This plan is to be prepared in conjunction with the institution's operating budget for the fiscal year.

The Operational Communications Plan concentrates on the delivery of communications. It includes expenditures for the various communications methods and activities (e.g. publishing, advertising, audio-visual productions, expositions, media monitoring and public relations) in accordance with the definitions set out in Appendix A, for three years: past year, year just ending, and anticipated for the next year. These data are required for each program, as defined in the Main Estimates.

The deputy head ensures that accountability has been assigned within the institution for the approval of all communications projects encompassed by the Operational Communications Plan, to ensure that these projects are consistent with government-wide and institutional strategy, and that they are in accordance with government communications policy.

Financial data derived from the Operational Communications Plan are provided, on request, to the Privy Council Office for the purpose of providing aggregate data on government communications activities for review by ministers.

(d) Updating

Strategic communications plans provide a snapshot in time of future events and are therefore subject to modification as circumstances dictate. The deputy head ensures that accountability has been assigned within the institution for the approval of all communications projects arising during the course of the fiscal year that have not been approved as part of the operating budget. Institutions should inform the Privy Council Office of adjustments to plans made during the course of the fiscal year.

(e) Evaluating

Institutions monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of their communications activities in relation to the objectives stated in communications plans.

2.1.2 New initiatives

Institutions must ensure that the public environment for an initiative has been fully assessed and is reflected in the overall plan, and that communications form an integral part of that plan.

Communications plans, including associated resource requirements, are required for all memoranda to Cabinet as prescribed by the Cabinet Paper System. A communications plan should also be prepared for a Treasury Board submission relating to a significant initiative, when that initiative has not been the subject of a memorandum to Cabinet.

2.2 Coordinating communications

Pursuant to Cabinet direction, the Clerk of the Privy Council may issue instructions to deputy heads on corporate communications of the Government of Canada. The Privy Council Office may also designate lead agencies and assign special responsibilities for the conduct of corporate communications. Deputy heads are required to review these instructions and all relevant Cabinet decisions, and ensure that they are fully implemented.

Each institution monitors the public environment in relation to its policies and programs in order to anticipate issues that may arise. When an issue could have government-wide communications implications or require coordination, the deputy head should seek the advice of the Assistant Secretary, Communications and Consultations Secretariat of the Privy Council Office.

2.3 Crisis management

Good communications are an essential element of effective crisis management. Institutions are responsible for anticipating, to the extent possible, major crises such as environmental or public health hazards, acts of terrorism, and all forms of natural or man-made disasters where many government agencies at federal, provincial and local levels may be required to provide support.

In such circumstances it is incumbent on lead agencies to undertake contingency planning, develop standard operating procedures, and seek agreement with regional and local authorities not only for the coordination of government assistance, but for the designation of a single focus of responsibility for all communications with the public. This agreement is essential for the timely provision of accurate, relevant and consistent information to facilitate the delivery of services, to eliminate the potential for contradiction and to bolster public confidence. Where it is unclear which agency may have the lead in particular circumstances, institutions should seek guidance from the Privy Council Office.

3. Public environment

Communicating with the public is not only a matter of providing information but also of listening to the public. To develop policies and programs that meet the needs of the public, the government should know the public environment within which it must operate.

Every program should provide for client feedback. In relation to new policies or major initiatives, the government may use the appropriate means to understand Canadian society better and to assess the effectiveness of policies and programs. When such means involve public opinion research, it should be conducted in accordance with the principles and procedures set out in the Policy on the Management of Government Information Holdings and the Contracting Policy. These principles and procedures also apply to surveys of government employees.

4. Availability and dissemination of information

4.1 Principles

The government has a clear responsibility to ensure that information about federal policies, programs and services is disseminated or made available in all regions of Canada. This principle of openness in government enables informed public participation in the formulation of government policy, ensures fairness in government decision making, enables the public to assess the government's performance and promotes accountability on the part of the government.

The Access to Information Act provides the legal framework for openness in government by giving Canadians the right of access, subject to limited and specific exemptions, to government information. The Act also makes it clear that it only complements and does not replace existing procedures for access to government information and should not limit in any way access to the type of government information that is normally available to the general public. However, the provision of information is costly and should be undertaken only where there is a clear duty to inform the public or where the user is willing to pay for it. The full cost of providing information to serve the proprietary interests of individuals should not be borne by taxpayers at large.

4.2 Charging for information

In assessing the cost of making information available for purchase by the public, institutions should take into consideration the full costs of collecting, compiling, preparing, producing and disseminating information. The government's policy on external user fees and charges applies in the determination of the level of charges. Guidance on the setting of fees and charges, including the circumstances where less than full cost recovery may be justified, is provided in the Treasury Board's Policy on External User Charges.

4.2.1 Reducing or waiving charges

Institutions should reduce or waive fees and charges to users where there is a clear duty to inform the public, i.e. when the information:

- is needed by individuals to make use of a service or program for which they may be eligible;

- is required for public understanding of a major new priority, law, policy, program or service;

- explains the rights, entitlements and obligations of individuals;

- informs the public about dangers to health, safety or the environment;

- consists of personal information under the control of the government and is requested by the individual whom it concerns; or

- has been requested under the Access to Information Act and fees are waived at the discretion of the head of the institution.

4.3 Providing information from data bases

Where there is significant demand for information from data bases, institutions are required to make such information available for purchase by:

(a) contracting with the private sector through the Canada Communication Group to make information from data bases available on demand;

(b) making information from data bases directly available for purchase where they are authorized to do so by law or, where such authority does not exist, by developing a proposal and rate structure in accordance with Treasury Board policy, and submitting them for the approval of the Treasury Board; or

(c) arranging to have the information published in accordance with article 4.5 below.

4.4 Indexing

The Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act require government institutions to account for and describe their information holdings for use in the Access Register and the Index to Personal Information. Although the Acts do not legally apply to published material or material available for purchase, institutions are required, as a matter of government policy, to index such material for public reference. Such references would include catalogues and indexes of library and archival materials, lists of all published material, and institutional guides and inventories.

4.5 Publishing

The following procedures apply to the publishing of government information, excluding information referred to in articles 4.3(a) and (b) above:

(a) institutions make accessible to the Canada Communication Group-Publishing (CCG-P) information on publications that they plan to produce;

(b) CCG-P assesses public demand and recommends to the institution which works should be published as priced publications;

(c) where the institution and CCG-P agree that a particular publication should be priced, CCG-P arranges for copublishing with the private sector, where practical. In the event that copublishing is not practical, CCG-P may arrange to publish the work directly;

(d) an institution may proceed with the development, production and dissemination of a free publication where it has determined that such a publication meets the criteria set out in article 4.2; and

(e) for purposes of the Depository Services Program, institutions are required to provide CCG-P with copies of each item that they publish.

See also Appendix C.

4.6 Advertising

All federal advertising is coordinated to support the social, economic and cultural objectives of the government and to ensure that the public is adequately informed of government programs and priorities. All significant advertising campaigns must be pre-tested to ensure that they meet their stated objectives. Pre-testing, which constitutes public opinion research, is the responsibility of the sponsoring institution and shall only be conducted when there is a clear need for the service. Departments are encouraged to work together whenever possible so they can share results, avoid duplication and reduce costs. The policy requires institutions to coordinate their pre-testing activities. PWGSC will record and coordinate pre-testing activities and will withhold approval of contracts for pre-testing only when there are concerns about the integrity of the contracting process, including any planned expenditures associated with the development and production of public service announcements (PSAs). Such concurrence does not relieve institutions of their responsibilities for the content, efficiency and effectiveness of their advertising. No concurrence is required for paid announcements, such as tender notices, that institutions usually place directly with the media. Paid announcements are considered advertising if an advertising agency is used.

To provide institutions with statements of concurrence, PWGSC, on behalf its Minister, will review:

- advertising proposals contained in annual work plans prepared for multi-year operational plans, to provide the Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada with advice on the subject, theme and resource profile proposed for the forthcoming year;

- advertising programs intended for inclusion in institutional Estimates submissions to the Treasury Board, to ensure government expenditure guidelines are met;

- advertising projects, to ensure that the concept and strategy are consistent with government communications objectives; and,

- advertising plans, to ensure the quality and soundness of the creative approach, media plan and other aspects of the intended advertising.

The delegated authority for advertising in PWGSC is responsible for communicating its requirements in relation to the above directly to institutions.

The Agency of Record (AOR), an organization under contract with PWGSC, consolidates and purchases all media time and space requirements for all government advertising except paid announcements, which are placed directly by institutions. As well, the AOR carries out certain administrative procedures associated with such purchases.

PWGSC contracts for government advertising. In addition to issuing the long-term agreement with the AOR, it negotiates and issues long-term contracts with advertising agencies for production and media planning. In this connection, it also develops and maintains a list of pre-qualified suppliers of advertising agency services in accordance with the standards set out in the Contracting Policy (see Appendix D).

4.7 Responding to enquiries

The Policy requires institutions to designate managers and specialists to act as primary spokespersons in relations with the public, the media and members of Parliament, on subjects in their areas of expertise.

4.7.1 Public and parliamentary enquiries

Institutions should respond fully to public enquiries, unless the information qualifies for exemption under the Access to Information Act or Privacy Act, or a response would be costly and no fee schedule applies. Where there is some question of the information being exempt, the individual should be informed of his or her right to make a request under the Access to Information Act or Privacy Act, as appropriate.

If information requested under these Acts would normally be available informally, the institution should advise the person requesting the information that an access to information request is not necessary, and either provide the information or inform the person where it may be obtained.

To help the public obtain information about major programs and services, institutions should ensure that these programs and services are referred to in public directories. (See also APM, Chapter 436.)

Institutions should respond to requests for information from parliamentarians in the same manner as they would respond to requests from the public.

4.7.2 Media enquiries

Enquiries from the media should normally be directed to the designated spokesperson for the particular subject.

Designated spokespersons are restricted to discussing matters of fact or already-approved government policy in an open, on-the-record basis. Off-the-record background briefings or interviews are only permitted in exceptional circumstances and are subject to prior ministerial approval. All speculation and questions on proposed policy should be referred to the minister.

5. Content and presentation

5.1 Language

5.1.1 Official languages

The Charter of Rights and Freedoms provides for the equality of status of English and French as Canada's official languages, and equal rights and privileges as to their use in all the institutions of the Parliament and Government of Canada. The Official Languages Act provides the legal framework to ensure respect for their equality. Treasury Board policies and guidelines derived from these statutory provisions set out requirements with respect to communications.

5.1.2 Plain language

The obligation to inform the public includes the obligation to communicate effectively. Information about government policies, programs and services should be clear, objective and simple, and presented in a manner that is readily understandable. Messages should convey information relevant to public needs, use plain language and be expressed in a clear and consistent style.

Each institution is responsible for the content and the linguistic quality of messages prepared in either official language.

Guidelines and standards of usage are set out in publications issued by the Department of Canadian Heritage, in standard reference books on the subject and in the Federal Identity Program Manual.

5.2 Fair communications practices

Fair communications practices refer to the elimination of sexual stereotyping, the fair and representative depiction of people in relation to race, ethnic origin and disability, and the use of special measures to reach disabled persons and other special publics. (See also Appendix E.)

5.2.1 Elimination of sexual stereotyping

Sexual stereotyping is the use of words, actions and graphic material that assigns roles or characteristics to people solely on the basis of sex, and without regard for the intrinsic potentials of women and men.

Government communications must not contain regressive terminology, demeaning depiction or unequal representation of the sexes.

5.2.2 Fair and representative depiction

Government communications must reflect the principle that all individuals, irrespective of ancestry, ethnic origin or disability, are and must be portrayed as equally productive and contributing members of Canadian society.

Government institutions should ensure that their communications do not contain biases or stereotypes which constitute barriers to full participation by individuals or groups in Canadian society.

5.2.3 Communications with disabled persons

When planning and executing communications, government institutions should consider the need and the means available to communicate with disabled persons.

A particular effort should be made to reach disabled persons who are meant to be served by certain government programs. The term "disabled persons" includes those who are partially sighted, blind, hard of hearing or deaf; and those who may be disabled as a result of a speech, mobility, learning, psychiatric or mental impairment.

5.2.4 Communications with multicultural communities

When planning and executing communications, government institutions should ensure that the broad range of government policies and program initiatives, not just those of a multicultural nature, are effectively communicated to multicultural communities in the spirit of the Canadian Multiculturalism Act. This requirement may involve producing communications in languages other than the two official languages.

6. Visibility

To be accessible and answerable, the government must be visible and recognizable. This visibility or federal presence permits the public to see the Government of Canada and to assess it.

6.1 Corporate identity

Corporate identity means the outward manifestations of an institution and its activities. The Federal Identity Program is intended to achieve clear and consistent identification of the institutions to which it applies and to assist the public in recognizing and gaining access to federal programs and services.

The corporate identity standards for the Government of Canada are set out in Chapter 2 of this volume and in the Federal Identity Program Manual.

Each institution is required to manage its corporate identity in accordance with government-wide standards. Institutions should ensure that the policy and standards on corporate identity are fully implemented as an integral part of overall management responsibilities. A well coordinated and purposeful corporate identity can also assist in projecting a positive and responsive image of the Public Service.

The different applications of corporate identity range from the "permanent media" (stationery, signage, vehicle markings, personnel identification) to the "transitory media" (all types of printed material, advertising, audio-visuals materials, expositions).

6.2 Public events

Public events are all occasions attended by ministers and senior officials for the purpose of publicizing significant federal initiatives or contributions.

A federal institution may sponsor an event or, where appropriate, cosponsor an event with another government or the private sector. In cosponsoring an event, a federal institution should ensure that its participation reflects its contribution, financial or otherwise, to the particular program or project.

Communications plans pertaining to a shared-cost program should be developed from the outset, and form part of any agreement between a federal institution and another government or a private institution.

7. Procurement

7.1 Common services

Common services policies require that all communications services be procured as follows:

- in the case of a mandatory common service, by procuring services solely through, or from, the Canada Communication Group (CCG);

- in the case of an optional common service, by procuring services from the private sector either directly or through the CCG;

- by performing other services within the institution (in-house).

The requirements for each of the communications activities are set out in Table 1 which follows.

Table 1

Summary of procurement              PWGSC

Public opinion research (note 1) A
Advertising (note 2) A
Publishing
- free products X
- priced products B
- copublished products B
Printing B
Film and video production B
Photographic services X
Expositions X
Media monitoring X
Public relations contracts X
Signage X
Enquiries X
Other communications services, X including: strategic planning inputs; environmental assessment; writing and editing; multi-media project management; evaluation; graphic design; creative services

Notes Legend

1. Public opinion research is a A Mandatory common service. The mandatory common service under Minister of Public Works and T.B. policy (revision 31-07-94). Government Services Canada may delegate authority for the management of government advertising and public opinion research.

2. Paid announcements, such as B Optional common service when public notices regarding tenders, there is delegated authority from sales, public hours and addresses, the Minister for Public Works and may be placed directly with the Government Services Canada. media by institutions, provided that an advertising agency is not used.

X Optional common service. No delegation required.

To promote a clear understanding of their respective roles and responsibilities, CCG and client institutions should generally make their relationship the subject of agreements or memoranda of understanding. Such agreements or memoranda would outline: the division of responsibilities; the performance commitments; fees (where applicable); the duration of the agreement; delegations (where applicable); and methods for resolving disputes.

7.2 Procurement from other sources

There may be special circumstances where the procurement of certain communications services directly from other sources may be justified. Such exceptions may be sought when CCG and a client institution agree that procurement from other sources would be more cost-effective for the government as a whole.

Exceptions may be established by written agreement between the deputy head of the client institution and the Chief Operating Officer or a delegate of CCG, or as part of a Memorandum of Understanding under the Increased Ministerial Authority and Accountability process. Exceptions may apply only to specific services and time periods. Deputy heads may seek permanent exemption by means of a submission to the Treasury Board after consulting the Chief Operating Officer of CCG.

Institutions that are authorized to contract directly with the private sector must adhere to Government Contracts Regulations and related standards for the invitation of tenders and the awarding of contracts. (See the "Contracting" volume of the Treasury Board Manual.)

7.3 Performance standards

The provision of communications services by CCG will be evaluated against general performance standards or those set out in a specific agreement with the client institution (see article 7.1).


Appendix A
Definitions

Advertising (Publicit) - refers to activities involved in the purchase, by or on behalf of the government, of space or time in print or broadcast media, or in other mass media such as outdoor and transit advertising; it also includes any creative work associated with the production of an advertisement, any advertising research such as pre-testing, evaluating and recommending general advertising strategies, and post-evaluation of advertising campaigns.

Audio-visual (Audio-visuel) - refers to activities involved in selecting, commissioning, editing and preparing information for dissemination to the public by means of an audio-visual production such as motion picture film, videotape, videodisc and sound-slide presentation; the term also refers to the subsequent promotion and distribution to the public of such items.

Editing (Rvision) - is the activity of improving the presentation and the quality of manuscripts by correcting errors in grammar, sentence structure and format, and by revising or rewriting portions of text to improve clarity, organization, conciseness, consistency and accuracy.

Expositions (Expositions) - refers to activities involved in selecting, commissioning, editing and preparing information for dissemination to the public by means of an exhibit or display at an exhibition, trade fair, convention, store or at any similar public venue; the term refers also to the design, fabrication, transportation and installation of exhibits and displays.

Head of communications (Chef des communications) - is the senior official designated by the deputy head to support the deputy head in coordinating and directing the implementation of this policy.

Media monitoring (Surveillance des reportages des mdias) - refers to activities involved in assessing coverage of particular topics in print, broadcast or other mass media.

Media relations (Relations avec les mdias) - is the activity of developing and maintaining effective communications with representatives of print and electronic media to facilitate the flow of information between government and public.

Public opinion research (Sondages) - refers to activities involved in soliciting the views of Canadians.

Public relations contract (Marchs des relations publiques) - refers to activities involved in contracting with the private sector for communications services not otherwise defined in this appendix.

Publishing (dition) - refers to activities involved in selecting, commissioning and preparing information for distribution to the public by means of products such as books, periodicals, brochures, microfilms, microfiches, discs, video-cassettes and audio tapes; it also includes the subsequent promotion, distribution or sale to the public, of these products.

Writing (Rdaction) - is the activity of gathering and synthesizing information and composing written material, usually for publication and distribution, to convey particular messages to intended target audiences in a readily understandable manner.


Appendix B
List of institutions

Pursuant to the planning cycle set out in article 2.1, the following institutions are required to make their Strategic Communications Plans available to the Privy Council Office:

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Canadian International Development Agency
Citizenship and Immigration Canada
Department of Canadian Heritage
Department of Finance Canada
Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade
Department of Industry
Department of Justice Canada
Environment Canada
Fisheries and Oceans
Health Canada
Human Resources Development Canada
Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
National Defence
Natural Resources Canada
Public Service Commission of Canada
Public Works and Government Services Canada
Revenue Canada
Solicitor General Canada
Statistics Canada
Status of Women Canada
Transport Canada
Treasury Board Secretariat of Canada
Veterans Affairs Canada
Western Economic Diversification Canada


Appendix C
Publishing

1. Introduction

The government has a clear responsibility to ensure that information about federal policies, programs and services is disseminated or made available in all regions of Canada. One of the major ways this is accomplished is through the publishing activities of federal institutions.

The Communications Policy sets out the basic requirements for these activities. Each institution decides what is to be published and, in conjunction with PWGSC through the Canada Communication Group - Publishing (CCG-P), whether those publications should be free or priced. If the publication is free, the institution assumes responsibility for its publication; if it is priced, the responsibility resides with the CCG-P unless the institution has its own statutory authority to publish.

1.1 Purpose

This Appendix provides guidelines to assist institutions in implementing the policy requirements for publishing and certain mandatory technical requirements which are based in law.

1.2 Scope

The material covered by the Appendix includes:

- all free or priced publications intended for the public;

- information from data bases made available through arrangements with the (CCG-P) in accordance with article 4.3(c) of Application of the Policy.

In addition, material intended primarily for internal use but also made available for purchase by the public should be treated as a priced publication.

It should be noted that although the definition of publishing (see article 1.4) includes electronic publishing, only that electronic publishing done through the CCG-P is included in the material covered by this Appendix. When an institution chooses to do its own electronic publishing (as provided under articles 4.3(a) and (b) of Application of the Policy) the products are not covered by this Appendix. Institutions should be aware that they must continue to comply with other relevant Acts such as the Financial Administration Act and the Copyright Act.

1.3 Authorities

The guidelines give effect to government decisions on government publishing taken in 1970 and 1971. Their provisions are also pursuant to the following statutory authorities:

Department of Supply and Services Act, Section 5(1)(d), Section 7 and Section 15 which deal respectively with the duties of the Minister of Supply and Services, delegation by the Minister of Supply and Services and the Queen's Printer;

Official Languages Act, Part II, which deals with legislative and other instruments, and Part IV, which deals with communications with the public and services to the public in both official languages.

1.4 Definitions

Author institution (Institution auteur) - the institution that prepares, or causes to be prepared, material so that it is ready for publishing.

Co-publishing (Co-dition) - the publishing of any government publication by private publishers to whom the publishing function has been delegated by the CCG-P in co-operation with the author institution or the sharing of the publishing function by a private publisher with the CCG-P.

Permanent paper (Papier permanent) - a paper which can be stored for a long period of time without discoloration or change in texture. The currently accepted standard for permanent paper is ANSI (American National Standards Institute) Z39.48-1984.

Publication (Publication) - any product created by the act of publishing.

Publishing (dition) - activities involved in selecting, commissioning and preparing information for distribution to the public, by any means, of products such as books, periodicals, brochures, microfilms, microfiches, discs, video-cassettes, audio tapes and machine-readable tapes; it also includes the subsequent promotion, distribution or sale to the public, of these products.

Publishing institution (Institution ditrice) - for priced publications, the CCG-P or an institution mandated by legislation to publish and, for free publications, the author institution.

2. Administrative arrangements

This section sets out guidelines governing the relations between the CCG-P and author institutions. Any subjects discussed here may be the subject of a memorandum of understanding between the institution and the CCG-P as provided for in article 7.1 of Application of the Policy. In addition, CCG-P may, after consultation with an institution and with the Treasury Board Secretariat, formally delegate some or all of its responsibilities to that institution's minister under the DSS Act and in accordance with the requirements of Chapter 303, Common Services Policy, of the APM. Any institution having such a delegation has to comply with the same requirements as the CCG-P.

2.1 Planning

The Government Communications Policy requires institutions to inform PWGSC of the publications they plan to produce. This information should be provided to the CCG-P. Institutions should also provide the following information on their publishing activities to the CCG-P when requested to do so:

- whether the publication will be free or priced;

- the anticipated release date;

- the quantity proposed, including sufficient copies in English and French for distribution through the Depository Services Program; and

- the need for availability in alternate media to meet the requirements of disabled persons.

Publication planning should also include an examination of environmental considerations whenever feasible and economical. There are two kinds of paper which are environmentally friendly: permanent paper and recycled paper. As general rule permanent paper is used for material of historic or archival interest (e.g. books and periodicals) while recycled paper is used for more transitory material (e.g. brochures and packaging).

Questions to ask when trying to determine whether a publication is environmentally friendly include:

- should permanent paper be used for printing?

- can recycled paper be used for printing or packaging?

- is packaging re-cyclable? e.g. paper vs. plastic?

- can the paper be recycled? e.g. newsprint or permanent paper vs. glossy finish? ink coverage/amount of colour?

- have the quantities been accurately estimated to avoid waste?

To indicate the governments commitment to environmental concerns, the symbols denoting the use of permanent or recycled paper should be included on the publication as appropriate.

2.2 Pricing for sale

In line with the cost recovery policy of the government the price of publications must be based on market value or a reasonable approximation of it. The criteria that determine when the price may be reduced or waived are set out in article 4.2 of Application of the Policy and in the TB Policy on External User Charges.

The list price of a publication is established by the CCG-P in consultation with the author institution and in accordance with the rate structure approved annually by Treasury Board. If an institution decides that a publication meets the criteria mentioned above, it may either issue the publication free of charge or reduce its retail price by providing support from institutional funds to the CCG-P.

2.3 Marketing and sales

In general, the CCG-P markets and sells all priced government publications in Canada and abroad, and negotiates sales and distribution contracts. Author institutions are responsible for marketing and distributing their free publications unless they wish to make other arrangements with the CCG-P.

If the author institution wishes to give a priced publication more promotion than is considered necessary by the CCG-P, it would negotiate that with the CCG-P by means of a memorandum of understanding. Institutions should not, without first consulting the CCG-P, issue promotional material or give the date of availability for new or revised titles of priced publications in order to ensure that the supply is adequate for any demand generated.

An institution may not charge to public funds publishing costs incurred on behalf of any organization or person outside the government, unless a parliamentary appropriation has been specifically provided or clearly intended for that purpose, or unless arrangements (e.g. contracts or co-publishing agreements) have been made to share publishing costs, and the extent and amount of the Crown's share are clearly identified.

If Parliament has approved, by means of specific appropriations, financial assistance to organizations or persons outside the government for preparing and publishing reports or other documents for the government, the CCG-P should be offered the right of first refusal to publish and distribute for sale any such material.

Proceeds from the sale of all publications by, or on behalf of, the CCG-P; fees for all legal notices appearing in the Canada Gazette; and revenues from royalty arrangements, as specified in licensing and co-publishing agreements, are deposited to the credit of the Supply Revolving Fund unless other arrangements have been made by a memorandum of understanding.

2.4 Distribution

If a publication is to be tabled in Parliament, general distribution is withheld until the CCG-P has received a release in writing from the author institution, or has evidence that the publication has been tabled in Parliament.

The CCG-P may, on written agreement of the author institution, arrange for advance shipments of publications before tabling in Parliament or release.

To avoid undermining the market for a publication, institutions should not carry out either advance or private distribution to the public of any of their priced publications before stock becomes available for sale by the CCG-P, except with the agreement of the CCG-P. Particulars of free distribution should be provided to the CCG-P before distribution.

When a statute, such as the Publication of Statutes Act or the Statutory Instruments Act, directs that a publication be distributed to a pre-determined list of recipients, and where such publications are priced, then the CCG-P shall requisition and pay for the necessary copies for the distribution. Should the publications be free of charge, then the author institution is responsible for supplying the CCG-P with the required number of copies for distribution to the pre-determined recipients and for the Depository Services Program. More information on the above quantities can be obtained from the CCG-P.

In addition, the publishing institution supplies the Library of Parliament with five copies of each publication and that the National Library with two. Publishing institutions should also ensure that the Library of Parliament receives, on request, copies of those materials intended primarily for internal use.

2.5 Disposal of surplus stocks

Surplus stocks of all publications are disposed of in accordance with the requirements of the National Library Act. For more information on these requirements and the procedures to follow, refer to the User's Guide of the Canadian Book Exchange Centre. The Centre is operated by the National Library as a clearing-house service for the distribution and exchange of publications deemed surplus by some institutions but of use to others.

3. Official languages

Institutions should follow the guidelines regarding official languages set out in Annex A until regulations pursuant to the Official Languages Act and subsequent policies in this area are issued.

4. Advertising

At the discretion of author institutions or the CCG-P, government publications may include free announcements and notices that promote government programs or the programs of non-profit organizations devoted to the protection of the health and welfare of people.

Including commercial or paid advertising requires the prior approval of the Treasury Board. Such an inclusion may make a publication subject to sales tax.

5. Copyright

Canadian government publications, both free and priced, are automatically protected by copyright under Section 12, Copyright Act, Chapter C-42, Revised Statutes of Canada, l985.

To protect the Crown copyright each publication should contain a notice of copyright as follows:

Minister of Supply and Services, Canada, (year published)

5.1 Author's rights as related to copyright

When government employees intend to publish outside their institution non-fiction writings or illustrations using material relating to institutional programs, they are required to report their intentions to their institution before their "work" is completed. The institution can then determine whether to permit publication and whether to retain ownership of that particular manuscript taking into account:

- the relationship of the material to the duties of the author's position, and

- the institutional data, facilities and time (normal working hours) used.

When appropriate, the CCG-P may, with the concurrence of employer institutions, waive ownership of copyright or award the author a share (to be negotiated) of the royalties arranged for with a private publisher. Should no such agreement be reached before the work is finalized, the work automatically becomes the property of the Crown by virtue of Section 12 of the Copyright Act.

5.2 Author's rights as related to moral rights

The June 1988 changes to the Copyright Act elaborated moral rights, and created the remedies in the case of breach. Institutions should be aware of employees' moral rights. These rights apply and vest with the author(s), regardless of who owns the copyright. These moral rights cannot be assigned, but they may be waived, preferably in writing.

There are two moral rights: where reasonable in the circumstances, the right to be associated with one's work, i.e. that the person's name appear with the text; and, that the integrity of the text be respected, i.e. that it not be abridged, edited or changed out of context.

In practice, the names of authors should appear on formal research and technical publications. For other types of publications, authors should be mentioned in an appropriate foreword or acknowledgement page where reasonable in the circumstances. Institutions should be aware that, especially when an author's name will be associated with his or her text, the author should agree to any major editorial changes to that text. An institution which does not wish to name authors on its publications and there is a question about the reasonableness of the circumstances should seek written waivers from these authors of both moral rights.

5.3 Reproduction of private sector copyrighted works

For the purposes of this Appendix the term reproduce means to copy, translate, print, publish, sell, or convert into an electronic or other format.

If material whose copyright is held by a private source is reproduced with permission in a government publication, the ownership of the copyright must be clearly stated in that publication. The publishing institution must ensure that there are no restrictions due to copyright, moral rights or other reasons which would render the printing of the material by the Crown improper.

5.4 Reproduction of Crown copyrighted works

Unless otherwise permitted by law or specified in the publication, government publications may be reproduced by agencies and persons outside the Government of Canada provided prior permission is secured in writing. The CCG-P has been designated by the government as the centre which administers and protects the copyright in government publications.

On the advice of the author institution, the CCG-P is directly responsible for granting permission for the reproduction of priced Crown copyrighted works and for negotiating all licensing arrangements for both priced and free publications where royalties are due.

Except for transactions involving the payment of fees or royalties, institutions are responsible for granting permission for the use of Crown copyrighted material contained in free institutional publications. Institutions should provide a file copy of all such permissions to the CCG-P.

Permission should be granted for reproducing material protected by Crown copyright unless the intended reproduction would:

- be in an undignified context;

- be considered as an unfair or misleading selection;

- be used for advertising purposes in an undesirable manner;

- be used in a context that may prejudice or harm a third party; or

- be considered inappropriate by the institution in question for legal or other specifiable reasons.

If it is considered advantageous for program or other reasons, an institution may permit the use of Crown copyrighted material without the prospective user securing prior permission by including a notice to that effect in the publication. Such a notice should stipulate that material therein may be used without seeking permission provided that the material is accurately reproduced and an acknowledgement of the source work and institution is included. No royalties or permission fees are to be charged for use of copyright materials under this circumstance.

Permission is granted for reproducing federal law, i.e. federal legislation, regulations, orders and other instruments, the decisions of federal courts and tribunals provided that due diligence is exercised in ensuring the accuracy of the materials reproduced and that the reproduction is not represented as an official version. No royalties or permission fees will be applied for the reproduction of such information (see Annex B).

No fees should be required if the copyright material to be used forms less than 25 per cent of the work to be published. The author institution may advise the CCG-P to waive fees or royalties if the proposed use of the work assists in the achievement of program objectives, or the requester is a non-profit organization.

The royalty normally charged by the CCG-P is 10 per cent of net sales revenues; however, this rate is subject to negotiation in particular circumstances. Royalties or permission fees will be prorated depending on the extent of use as set out in schedules maintained by the CCG-P.

6. Identification of government publications

As a minimum, the following information should appear in every government publication and is the responsibility of the publishing institution:

- the title of publication;

- the corporate signature and "Canada" wordmark as specified in Chapter 2, Federal Identity Program;

- the copyright notice;

- the SSC catalogue number, if applicable;

- the institutional catalogue number, if applicable;

- the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) or the International Standard Serial Number (ISSN);

- the notice, when appropriate, "galement disponible en franais sous le titre...."; and

- Cataloguing in Publication data for all priced publications and, when appropriate, for free publications. More information on this program can be obtained from the National Library.

In addition, all major publications should conform to the international standards set out in ISO 1086-1975, "Documentation - Title leaves of a book."

7. Special publications

7.1 Administrative consolidations

Administrative consolidations are compilations of material published originally in the Statutes of Canada, the Canada Gazette or in other statutory documents. They may contain explanatory notes and other matter for the guidance of users. Arrangements are to be made by a institution through the Canada Communication Group for publication by the Queen's Printer, but only with the approval of the Department of Justice.

7.2 Annual reports

An annual report required by statute should give a concise, factual account of the work of the institution during the subject year and the results achieved. Promotional material and matters of local interest should be excluded. They are to be distributed free of charge and in both official languages.

7.3 Annual reviews

In addition to their statutory annual reports, institutions may publish annual reviews or progress reports intended for the general or a special public. Unlike statutory annual reports, these publications may be promotional in nature.

An annual review may not be used as a substitute for a statutory annual report, nor can it be combined with such an annual report. Annual reviews should be planned in accordance with the guidelines for other publications.

7.4 Canada Gazette

The Canada Gazette is a means of providing official notice. Publication in the Canada Gazette is either required by statute or regulation, or may be directed or authorized by the Clerk of the Privy Council as being in the public interest. It is published by the CCG-P on behalf of the Queen's Printer.

The central production and distribution of the Canada Gazette has been placed on a cost-recovery basis. The rates for the inclusion of material in the Gazette are set as part of the annual review of their rate structure and may be obtained from the CCG-P.

Annex A: Official languages

(This annex will be subject to detailed review after regulations pursuant to the 1988 Official Languages Act are issued.)

As a general rule, institutional publications are published in both official languages. The quality of the content and of the format of a publication is the same in both official languages; and the date of publication and the selling price, when applicable, is also the same. (An exception may be made when a publication is written in a language other than the official languages.)

A publication may be issued in bilingual or unilingual versions. Overall costs are to be taken into account before deciding whether or not a publication should be issued in bilingual or unilingual versions. Bilingual versions may be printed side-by-side (two columns), tumble, text on facing pages or recto verso. All identification material within individual works is published in the language of the work itself. For the purposes of distribution, publications issued separately in the two official languages are considered as two separate publications.

The English and French editions of a publication are to be issued simultaneously. Should this be impractical for urgent program reasons, authorization of the minister of the author institution is required to release one edition before the other. The CCG-P cannot consent to issue a publication in one language edition ahead of the other unless it has received the required ministerial authorization in writing.

Annex B: Order in Council

Reproduction of Federal Law Order

Anyone may, without charge or request for permission, reproduce enactments and consolidations of enactments of the Government of Canada, and decisions and reasons for decisions of federally-constituted courts and administrative tribunals, provided due diligence is exercised in ensuring the accuracy of the materials reproduced and the reproduction is not represented as an official version.


Appendix D
Policy and Guidelines with Respect to Contracting Procedures for Communications, Public Opinion Research and Advertising Services

Application

The Contracting Policy applies to all contracts for communications, public opinion research and advertising services. To clarify what activities are included in these services and consequently subject to the Contracting Policy, a definition and examples of each service are provided in Annex A of this Appendix.

The Policy and Guidelines with Respect to Contracting Procedures for Communications, Public Opinion Research and Advertising Services are an integral part of the Communications Policy. Based on the principles and procedures of the Contracting Policy, the Policy and Guidelines are a more precise elaboration of the expected conduct in terms of contract initiation, solicitation, evaluation and reporting for communications, public opinion research and advertising services. This document also appears as Appendix U in the "Contracting" volume of the Treasury Board Manual.

When contracting for communications, public opinion research and advertising services, reference should also be made to the Contracting Policy and the Policy on Management of Government Information Holdings, which also apply to these services.

Initiation

1. Departments and agencies must use Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) to contract for all public opinion research or advertising services. Unless the Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada has delegated his authority, PWGSC is the only contracting authority for these services.

2. Departments and agencies must notify PWGSC at the beginning of a project planning process if this process could result in the award of a contract related to public opinion research or advertising services. Departments and agencies require the permission of PWGSC before they may proceed with these activities.

3. PWGSC will:

- in the case of advertising, assign a registration number to each project. Departments and agencies must obtain this number before they can award a contract for advertising services;

- in the case of public opinion research, assign a registration number to each project. Departments and agencies must obtain this number before the field work begins. PWGSC will only refrain from assigning this number if there are concerns about the integrity of the contracting process;

- continue to provide advisory services to departments and agencies in the areas of advertising and public opinion research; and

- review proposed projects for advertising and public opinion research with the Communications and Consultations Secretariat of the Privy Council Office, to ensure consistency with overall government priorities.

4. Departments and agencies will adhere to the principles and procedures of the Contracting Policy when proposing to contract for communications services. This requirement means that contracts in excess of $30,000 must be competitively solicited unless they meet one of the exceptions defined in the Contracting Policy. Contracts for these services will only be initiated when there is a clear need to publicize and explain government policies and programs, and when there is no less costly alternative available.

Solicitation

General

1. The contracting authority will include in each solicitation a statement to advise potential suppliers that:

- the government is monitoring contract awards for these services to ensure that there is no domination of the particular market by one or more contractors. Market dominance occurs when one or more contractors has been awarded more than 25 per cent of the approved total value of all contracts for a particular service in the current fiscal year; and

- remedial action will be taken, if required, to eliminate market dominance.

2. The contracting authority will state in the appropriate solicitation that only Canadian-owned and -controlled companies will be considered for advertising contracts. The contracting authority will provide the related definition of such companies. This ownership and control requirement, however, does not apply to contracts for public opinion research.

Contracts less than $30,000

1. The contracting authority may solicit bids for procurements of public opinion research and advertising services whose total value is less than $30,000. These low-dollar-value contracts may also be awarded non-competitively to a qualified supplier.

Splitting a contract into several contracts so that each contract has a value of less than $30,000 is not permitted under any circumstances.

Contracts in excess of $30,000

Transitional solicitation provisions for contracts for advertising and public opinion research services in excess of $30,000.

1. The contracting authority for advertising and public opinion research services may, for a period of one year after approval of the policy and guidelines, solicit proposals with respect to these services exclusively through the use of notification in appropriate trade journals. This method may be used to award a contract directly, or to prepare a list of prequalified suppliers for future solicitations for a particular service. If a suppliers' list is established, all qualified suppliers on it will be invited to submit a proposal in connection with every procurement of that type of service.

2. During this transitional period, the contracting authority will make preparations to use the Open Bidding Service (OBS) and Government Business Opportunities (GBO); if possible, the contracting authority should provide notification on the OBS and in GBO during this period. At the end of the one-year transitional period, the contracting authority will follow General Solicitation Procedures for solicitations for these services.

3. During the transition period, all solicitations will conform with the procedures outlined in Additional Solicitation Requirements.

General solicitation procedures

1. The contracting authority will solicit bids for procurements of public opinion research and advertising services whose total value exceeds $30,000 through open bidding or from a list of prequalified suppliers.

In the absence of a list of prequalified suppliers for the type of service sought, the contracting authority will publish a Notice of Proposed Procurement on the OBS and in GBO for a period of 30 days. This Notice of Proposed Procurement will state both the criteria to be used to qualify potential suppliers for consideration, and the criteria to be used to evaluate the proposals of qualifying suppliers.

The contracting authority may establish a list of prequalified suppliers for each type of service to use when procuring the service. To establish such a list, the contracting authority will publish a Notice of Planned Procurement on the OBS and in GBO for a period of 30 days. This Notice of Planned Procurement will state the criteria that will be used to qualify potential suppliers for consideration.

If the contracting authority creates a list of prequalified suppliers for a particular service, the contracting authority must:

(i) invite all qualified suppliers on the list to submit a proposal in connection with every procurement of that type of service; and

(ii) notify the community of interest of the existence of such lists by annually publishing a notice on the OBS and in GBO for a period of 15 days. This notice will publicize the existence of such lists and the criteria to qualify for inclusion. As a consequence of this notice, companies not on a particular list must be given the opportunity to qualify to be on it at any time.

2. In addition to the preceding methods, the contracting authority for advertising and public opinion research services may continue to use notification in the appropriate trade journals to inform potential suppliers of possible procurement opportunities.

Additional solicitation requirements

1. Regardless of which of the preceding procedures is used to qualify potential suppliers, the contracting authority will use the evaluation criteria of the Contracting Policy and Guidelines with Respect to Contracting Procedures for Communications, Public Opinion Research and Advertising Services to evaluate the proposals of qualified potential suppliers.

2. The contracting authority will only set aside the use of competitive solicitation for public opinion research and advertising services contracts in certain circumstances identified in the Contracting Policy and Government Contracts Regulations.

The contracting authority will publish an Advance Contract Award Notice (ACAN) on the OBS and in GBO, and in the appropriate trade journals if these have been used, to give notification of the proposed contract award if competitive solicitation has not been used because of a belief that only one supplier can provide the goods or services.

The contracting authority will provide the Treasury Board Secretariat with a letter of explanation within 30 days of awarding a contract for public opinion research and advertising services, if competitive solicitation has been set aside because (i) it is not in the public interest, or (ii) it is believed that there is only one supplier who can provide the services and the contracting authority has not published an ACAN to demonstrate this belief. This reporting requirement currently exists for emergency contracts, and the Secretariat's report to the Treasury Board on emergency contracting by departments and agencies will be expanded to address all of these reported exceptions to the Contracting Policy.

3. The contracting authority will publish a Contract Award Notice for procurements of public opinion research and advertising services on the OBS and in GBO, and in the appropriate trade journals if these publications have been used. This Contract Award Notice must be published no later than 72 days after the contract has been awarded.

4. In keeping with the openness of the Contracting Policy, the contracting authority will avoid practices such as contract splitting and will be scrupulous in proposing contract amendments and justifying sole-source contracts.

The contracting authority will also follow the Contracting Policy as it applies to situations of possible conflict of interest. As part of this requirement, the contracting authority must ensure that no conflict of interest exists between the government and other clients of the contractor.

Evaluation

Following an evaluation of proposals, the contracting authority will:

- award any contract for public opinion research and advertising services to the "best value" proposal, if the value of the contract lies within the authority's contracting limit, as determined by the Treasury Board; or

- recommend to the Treasury Board that it approve the award of any contract for public opinion research and advertising services to the "best value" proposal, if the value of the contract is in excess of the authority's contracting limit, as determined by the Treasury Board.

The current contracting limits for entry into a service contract are as follows (Treasury Board Manual, "Contracting" volume, Appendix C):

                        Open       Competitive    Non-competitive  
                                     bidding          bidding      

PWGSC $10 million $10 million $2 million

Transport $4 million $2 million $100,000

All other $1 million $400,000 $50,000 departments

Advertising services

Advertising services involve a range of activities. Requirements often cannot be precisely defined in advance. The criteria used to evaluate proposals for advertising services must reflect this unique contracting situation.

A department or agency will forward to the contracting authority a statement of its advertising needs. At the request of the department or agency, the contracting authority shall invite all the qualified advertising agencies on the list of prequalified advertising services suppliers to present proposals to a selection committee. The selection committee will be comprised of Public Service employees and private-sector representatives to be nominated by the department or agency, and shall include representatives of the contracting authority. The contracting authority will chair the selection committee.

The selection committee will judge proposals using a rating system based on specified criteria. The weight assigned to each criterion may be changed to reflect specific needs (see Adjustments). Once a suppliers' list (standing offer) is established, production estimates will be reviewed to ensure that costs are reasonable and in keeping with industry standards.

In the event that an unanticipated project arises and the department or agency is able to specify the related advertising requirements, then:

- if this project is part of the ongoing advertising program of the department or agency, the advertising agency assigned to the department or agency should be asked to develop a proposal in connection with it. If the department or agency and the contracting authority are not satisfied or have a cost-related concern with this proposal and these issues can not be resolved, they will not give further consideration to the proposal from the assigned advertising agency. The contracting authority will then solicit proposals from other advertising agencies in connection with the project. The review committee, comprised of representatives of the department or agency and the contracting authority, will select the most cost-effective proposal for this project;

- if this project is not part of the ongoing advertising program of the department or agency, then the contracting authority will solicit proposals from advertising agencies in connection with the project. The review committee, comprised of representatives of the department or agency and the contracting authority, will select the most cost-effective proposal for this project; or

- if this project is an emergency situation, then the department or agency and the contracting authority may wish to use the emergency provisions of the Contracting Policy to contract with an advertising agency.

The selection (review) committee will forward its recommendation, and a summary of its deliberations, to the Minister of the department or agency for approval.

The evaluation criteria for advertising services are:

(i) Capability 300 points 30 per cent

Professional qualifications, track record, experience with government accounts, creativity, strength of support services;

(ii) Comprehension 200 points 20 per cent

Understanding of program and media planning requirements;

(iii) Sensitivity 200 points 20 per cent

Awareness of institutional goals and government objectives, sensitivity to affected groups;

(iv) Service 100 points 10 per cent

Availability of senior personnel, talent and professionals; internal performance measurement;

(v) Compatibility 100 points 10 per cent

Adaptability, motivation, commitment; and

(vi) Overall impression 100 points 10 per cent

Impression of agency and its people from its proposal.

Public opinion research services

The requirements for a public opinion research service can usually be specified early. Therefore, the criteria used to evaluate proposals can be defined in advance, although flexibility in the weighting is required to address the differing urgent needs of quantitative and qualitative public opinion research.

The contracting authority will determine "best value" using a two-stage process. In the initial step, it will use the following criteria, which will be weighted to total 1000 points, to evaluate the bids from prospective suppliers of public opinion research services:

(i) Design and methodology: Research design, analysis, sampling, questionnaire construction and validation, data collection and field work procedures, recruitment proposal, issue identification;

(ii) Knowledge: Understanding of policy framework, identification of research issues, recognition of research limitations, sensitivity to affected groups; and

(iii) Experience: Personnel qualifications and experience, assignment of responsibilities, personnel allocations; project management, track record and previous experience.

Note:

In addition to the preceding rated criteria, the contracting authority could establish Mandatory criteria, which would have to be met before a proposal would be considered, for example:

- timetable: realistic deadlines, milestones, dates of interim and final reports;

- official languages: ability to meet requirements;

- reporting: written draft, final and summary reports, presentations; and

- documentation: requirements, curriculum vitae.

In the second stage of the selection process, the contracting authority will consider price. The price of a particular proposal, if it qualifies, will be divided by its rated score to determine the "dollar per point" value. The proposal with the lowest "dollar per point" value will be deemed the "best value proposal".

Adjustments

Prior to the publication of the Notice of Proposed Procurement or the solicitation of bids from the suppliers' list, the contracting authority may, if necessary, make minor adjustments to the pre-assigned weights of the preceding criteria to accommodate the particular requirements of individual contracting situations.

Any such adjustment will not exceed 25 per cent of an individual criterion's pre-assigned weight, but all such changes must be offset elsewhere so that the pre-assigned weight of all the evaluation criteria again totals 1000 points.

If adjustments are made to the pre-assigned weights of the evaluation criteria, these adjusted weights must be used to evaluate all the proposals in this particular solicitation.

Best value equivalents

Because there is some subjectivity in the prescribed evaluation procedure, it is possible for the ratings of the top two or more proposals to be within 10 per cent of each other, such that they may be deemed to be "best value equivalents". Examples:

- if the top-scoring advertising service proposal receives 940 points, then any other proposal which receives a score greater than or equal to 846 (940 - (10 per cent of 940) = 846) is defined to be a "best value equivalent";

- if the best dollar per point rating for public opinion research services proposals is 94, then any proposal which receives a dollar per point rating less than or equal to 103 (94 + (10 per cent of 94) = 103) is defined to be a "best value equivalent".

When the evaluation procedure for public opinion research and advertising services results in two or more "best value equivalent" proposals, the contracting authority may wish to seek the direction of the minister responsible for awarding this contract and, if appropriate, the direction of the minister of the relevant department or with responsibility for the relevant agency.

Evaluation criteria

Based on the evaluation criteria and their weights, the contracting authority should:

- require that a proposal obtain at least 70 per cent of the possible weight on each criterion. Failure to do so will mean that the proposal is deemed not to have qualified;

- have a consistent total "fail" mark for any proposal. It is suggested that any proposal that fails to receive a minimum total of 700 points be deemed not to have qualified.

If all proposals submitted fail to qualify, the contracting authority will undertake the solicitation procedure again.

Reporting

Forecasts

By December 31 of the current fiscal year, departments and agencies will provide PWGSC with a copy of their forecast of proposed expenditures on public opinion research and advertising services for the next fiscal year. PWGSC will provide a copy of this information to the Communications and Consultations Secretariat of the Privy Council Office. This forecast will be broken down by type of service, with a description of, and justification for, each initiative.

Reporting requirements

The contracting authority will provide the Treasury Board Secretariat with a quarterly report on contracts awarded for public opinion research and advertising services during the previous quarter.

The general reporting requirements are as follows:

- break-down by department and agency;

- break-down by type of service

  • public opinion research
  • advertising

For procurements under $30,000, the contracting authority must list the total number and total value of all contract.

For procurements in excess of $30,000, the contracting authority must list the total number and total value of all contracts by solicitation procedure:

- open bidding;

- suppliers' list; and

- non-competitive (sole source).

Each report must also contain a breakdown by individual contractor, including:

- name of contractor;

- number of contracts received by solicitation procedure; and

- total value of contracts received by solicitation procedure.

Based on this information on the value of contracts awarded, the Secretariat will provide a quarterly report to the Treasury Board on compliance by departments and agencies with this Policy. It will include information on the extent and value of competitive solicitation. Consequently, the Treasury Board will be able to identify departments and agencies whose performance is exemplary or in need of improvement and take appropriate action. The Secretariat will also advise the Treasury Board if there is evidence that one or more contractors is dominating the award of these contracts (defined as having been awarded more than 25 per cent of the approved total value of all contracts for a particular service in the current fiscal year) and, if so, what remedial course of action is possible.

Approval of the Treasury Board will be sought to make this quarterly report available to the public.

After a one-year trial period, the Secretariat will also advise the Treasury Board if there is a need to maintain this reporting requirement, and if so, for how long.

PWGSC will monitor advertising and polling expenditures by departments and agencies. At least twice each year, PWGSC will provide the Treasury Board with a submission which reviews the expenditures by departments and agencies on advertising and public opinion research. This submission will further assist the Treasury Board to monitor spending on these services and ensure that the government's overall expenditure target is met.

Resolution

With respect to contracts for public opinion research and advertising services, and for communications services where PWGSC is the contracting authority, if a department or agency fails to follow:

- the Guidelines on Contracting for Communications, Public

- the Contracting Policy, including the Policy and Guidelines with Respect to Contracting Procedures for Communications, Public Opinion Research and Advertising Services;

- the Communications Policy; and

- the Management of Government Information Holdings Policy

then the Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada:

- will work with the Communications and Consultations Secretariat of the Privy Council Office, the Treasury Board Secretariat, the Office of the Prime Minister, and the minister of the relevant department or with responsibility for the relevant agency to ensure that the aforementioned guidelines and policies are followed; and

- will advise the Treasury Board of the circumstances and outcome of each such situation.

With respect to all other contracts for communications services where PWGSC is not the contracting authority, if a department or agency fails to follow the aforementioned guidelines and policies:

- the Treasury Board Secretariat will work with the Communications and Consultations Secretariat of the Privy Council Office, the Office of the Prime Minister, and the minister of the relevant department or with responsibility for the relevant agency to ensure that the aforementioned guidelines and policies are followed; and

- the President of the Treasury Board will advise the Treasury Board of the circumstances and outcome of each such situation.

Annex A: Definitions

Advertising (publicit) - All activities, including research, involved in the purchase, by or on behalf of the government, of space or time in print or broadcast media, or in other mass media, such as outdoor and transit advertising.

It also includes any collateral materials such as posters and counter displays, and printed materials such as inserts that are a direct extension of an advertising campaign. Public service announcements are also considered advertising.

Cosponsorship initiatives, public relations, special events, direct marketing and promotional activities that are an extension or form part of an advertising campaign are included in the definition of advertising.

Paid announcements are not considered advertising in this context, unless an advertising agency is to be used.

Public opinion research (Recherche sur l'opinion publique) - The planned gathering, by or for a government institution, of opinions, attitudes, perceptions, judgments, feelings, ideas, reactions or views that are intended to be used for any government purpose, whether that information is collected from persons (including employees of government institutions), businesses, institutions or other entities, through quantitative or qualitative methods, irrespective of size or cost of those methods.

The definition includes, but is not restricted to:

- policy research;

- market research;

- communications research, including advertising research;

- program evaluation;

- quality of service and customer satisfaction studies;

- omnibus surveys (placement of one or more questions); and

- syndicated studies.

As well, the definition applies to components of other initiatives, such as communication strategies, product development and program evaluation.

The following research or methods for obtaining opinions, information or advice are not considered to be opinion research:

- literature reviews or reviews of secondary sources, including reviews of public opinion research that has already been conducted; and

- secondary analysis of previously collected public opinion research data.


Appendix E
Fair Communication Practices

1. Introduction

Language and pictures are a reflection of culture and attitudes. Hence, they can perpetuate myths and stereotypes - or help to eliminate them.

As stated in the Policy, it is the responsibility of government institutions to ensure that their communications reflect the principle that all individuals, irrespective of sex, ancestry, ethnic origin or disability, are and must be portrayed as equally productive and contributing members of Canadian society.

"Fair communications practices" refer to the elimination of sexual stereotyping, the fair and representative depiction of people in relation to race, ethnic origin and disability, and the use of special measures to reach disabled persons and other special publics. They recognize that communications have a cumulative impact on the perception of individuals, their behaviour and their aspirations.

2. Purpose

These guidelines provide elaboration and clarification of the "Fair Communications Practices" section of the Policy and are designed to assist with its application.

They include general principles for ensuring positive terminology, dignified depiction and equal representation in all forms of government communications, irrespective of whether they are created within, contracted for or purchased from outside the government.

3. Scope

These are guidelines on the use of words and images in government communications and the selection of alternate media to provide access to persons with disabilities. They pertain to written, visual and oral communications prepared by or for a federal institution. The fields of application include published material, advertising, audio-visual presentations and expositions.

While institutions are ultimately responsible for the content of their advertising, the Advertising Management Group, which co-ordinates all government advertising, monitors all material for concurrence with these guidelines and assists with their implementation.

Many of the examples that follow, while linked to communications practices concerning one target group, may be applied equally to all groups.

These guidelines are meant to create awareness and sensitivity to today's changing reality. The examples highlight some of the most common situations and usages, but do not preclude any area not specifically mentioned.

It is not meant to suggest that all groups of all ages and characteristics should be depicted in all communications materials, only that all negative depictions must be eliminated and as many positive portrayals as practical should be the goal.

4. Type of communications

4.1 Internal

These can be generated by any part of an institution for use within the government. Some of the more prominent activities, with examples of the materials they produce, are outlined below:

- Personnel-job descriptions, statements of qualifications, posters, advertisements, audio-visual presentations for training, text books, information sheets, orientation programs, recruitment and staff-development material and manuals.

- Program administration-program descriptions, guidelines, criteria, legislation, research, bibliographies.

- Ministerial-memoranda to ministers, speaking notes for ministers or anyone representing the government, discussion papers and Cabinet memoranda.

- Parliamentary liaison-responses to questions in the House of Commons, speaking notes for the House of Commons, briefing notes.

- General-memoranda, minutes of meetings, forms, reports, directives, correspondence, employee newsletters or publications, administrative manuals, awards programs, correspondence manuals, guidelines for publishing.

4.2 External

Typical materials include:

- Public Affairs Branches - publications, posters, public presentations, films, slides, photographs, graphics, speeches, advertising, exhibits, newsletters, public relations campaigns (national and international); and

- General-international information, surveys, questionnaires, forms, correspondence.

5. Elimination of sexual stereotyping

5.1 General

Sexual stereotyping has traditionally and consistently affected women more pervasively and negatively than it has men. Consequently, this section of the guidelines is aimed primarily at eliminating this type of stereotyping.

5.2 Word use

The whole range of human characteristics, attributes and circumstances should be shown to apply to women as well as men. Specifically, women should be:

- treated with equal respect and dignity without reference to physical characteristics or female-gender word forms (e.g. avoid manageress, poetess);

- depicted as working in all occupations and at all levels of authority. Their work should be described as being of equal value and significance to that of men;

- identified by their own names or titles, which should be non-sexist, and not by their roles as wife, mother, sister, or daughter, unless it is in this context to which they are being referred;

- used in examples, case histories, stories, samples and interviews that are not stereotypical.

Avoid generic terms and titles which use "man" to represent humanity, wherever this is feasible, without resorting to convoluted phraseology. In addition:

- correspondence should be addressed in the same form as that used by the originator unless tradition or discretion indicates otherwise when the originator is known;

- neither women nor men should always come first in order of mention. Alphabetical listings within categories should be used;

- avoid sentence constructions, such as adjectives or qualifying phrases, which make either sex the exception to the rule.

5.3 Visuals

Visual material includes photographs, slides, films, story-boards, posters, exhibitions, illustrations or any other graphic material.

Pictures of women should appear as frequently as pictures of men in graphic material. Specifically, women should be shown:

- as actively participating in all aspects of life and not necessarily as the recipients of advice, instruction or criticism nor as instructors in certain fields only;

- when practical and as subject matter allows, as being of all ages and of differing physical attributes;

- along with men, in non-traditional roles (e.g. men looking after children and women working as executives or possibly in mines or construction);

- as having achieved success in all fields of endeavour (e.g. sports, the arts, business etc.).

Works by and about women should be included in any exhibition, display or visual presentation, if possible.

Unintentional messages can be conveyed by the positioning of women in visual material. Avoid depictions that portray members of either sex in scenes of dominance or submission, or as being more or less serious or businesslike than the other sex.

5.4 Other considerations

Some suggestions for audio material:

- female voices should be used as often as male voices in voice-overs, regardless of subject matter;

- every effort should be made to ensure that women appear as interviewers and as the subjects of interviews as often as men (this would require monitoring by an institution's central communications unit);

- use dialogue of equal substance when referring to women, when women are speaking, or when women are doing voice-overs.

6. Fair and representative depiction of visible and ethnic minorities and aboriginal peoples

6.1 General

The following guidelines are based on the principle and policy of multiculturalism within a bilingual framework. Within this context, all groups, irrespective of ancestry and ethnic origin, are and must be portrayed as equally productive and contributing members of Canadian society.

In applying these guidelines, material should be reviewed to eliminate words, images and situations that reinforce erroneous preconceptions or suggest that all or most members of a racial or ethnic group have the same stereotypical characteristics. The guidelines apply equally to both sexes.

6.2 Visuals

The objective of the guidelines is not to impose unrealistic, convoluted or patronizing quotas on the depiction of minorities, but to realistically and regularly portray their presence at all levels of Canadian society.

All government communications should:

- reflect the presence of visible and ethnic minorities and aboriginal peoples at all levels in a broad range of occupations;

- portray visible and ethnic minorities and aboriginal peoples in pursuit of a wide range of interests, sports and hobbies;

- reflect the participation of visible and ethnic minorities and aboriginal peoples in all aspects of Canadian life;

- ensure that visible and ethnic minorities and aboriginal peoples are portrayed as capable, resourceful, self-confident, intelligent, imaginative and independent;

- portray visible and ethnic minorities and aboriginal peoples in ethnic or traditional garb only when depicting multicultural or traditional aboriginal events;

- ensure that visible and ethnic minorities and aboriginal peoples are adequately depicted as both observers and participants in mainstream cultural events (music, theatre, etc.), as well as in festivities focusing on multiculturalism itself;

- be aware of regional population mixes when preparing material for regional (or national) distribution as use of languages in addition to English and French might be warranted.

6.3 Word use

Oral and written communication should respect the principles underlying the guidelines for visual material. In relation to the use of language, all government communications should:

- avoid words that imply that all characteristics are not found in all groups and individuals;

- avoid qualifiers that reinforce racial and ethnic stereotypes;

- avoid language that, to some persons, has questionable racial or ethnic connotations, such as use of the term "culturally deprived", or colour-symbolic words that have negative implications;

- reflect the identification terminology preferences of racial and cultural groups; for example, "Inuit" is preferable to "Eskimo". Where there is any doubt, Multiculturalism Canada should be consulted;

- envisage the use of visible minorities, either as actors or as persons interviewing or being interviewed; they should not be precluded because of an accent, provided the message can be understood. Deliberate use of accents that may reinforce stereotypes should be avoided;

- review media sources to ensure that your messages are reaching intended ethnic and aboriginal communities in language(s) that they understand.

7. Communicating with persons with disabilities

7.1 General

More than 3.3 million Canadians have some kind of disability-this includes about one million with hearing disabilities and half a million who are visually impaired.

The parliamentary Standing Committee on the Status of Disabled Persons, in its 1988 report "No News is Bad News", summed up the communications problem this way:

"If persons with disabilities are truly to become integrated and to function independently in society, they must have the same access to information as other people."

Disabled persons share problems of representation with other special groups that can be solved in the following ways:

- Neutral Word Descriptions-the need for non-emotional, neutral terms when referring to persons with disabilities, similar to the need to ensure non-sexist language when referring to women;

- Recognition-visible minorities comment about "white only" depiction; disabled people are also generally invisible in a non-disabled world unless the media focus on special events such as marathons or telethons.

The 1988 report "Worthless or Wonderful" by the Status of Disabled Persons Secretariat of the Department of the Secretary of State of Canada makes some useful suggestions.

7.2 Word use

The whole range of human characteristics and attributes applicable to non-disabled persons should be shown to apply to disabled persons. Specifically, disabled persons should be:

- treated with dignity and respect, without reference to the negative aspects of disability or language designed to arouse fear, guilt or pity;

- depicted as living and working in a variety of circumstances with a range of responsibilities, and not necessarily as having overcome great odds to achieve their status;

- portrayed as active participants in events and not merely as decorative spectators; and

- identified by their achievements or capacities rather than by their limitations or handicaps.

When representing persons with a disability, avoid language that suggests characteristics of courage, suffering, pity, or abnormality. For example:

- use "disabled person" or "person with a disability" rather than "the disabled", or "the handicapped";

- many words referring to people with mental, developmental, psychological or emotional disabilities are now considered offensive. As appropriate, substitute "person with mental, developmental, psychological or emotional disability";

- written material describing contributions to Canadian life should include references to the lives and experiences of disabled persons;

- the use of disabled individuals, either as actors or as persons interviewing or being interviewed, should not be precluded because of a speech difficulty so long as the message can be understood or a voice-over can be used. Deliberate use of words, phrases or sounds which may reinforce stereotyping should be avoided.

7.3 Visuals

Within reason, disabled persons should appear in any visual representations of groups (graphics, TV, advertising) made up of men, women, young and old. As well as the often-shown wheelchair, visual representations might include:

- a person using crutches or a walker

- a blind person with a guide-dog or white cane

- a person with a missing limb

- a child with Down's Syndrome

- a frail, elderly person

Specifically, disabled persons should be shown, as the message or material indicates:

- as actively participating in all aspects of life as well as interested observers (at concerts, theatres, etc.);

- as being of various ages, both sexes, and many ethnic origins;

- along with able-bodied people in various employment roles (doctors, lawyers, government officials, business executives, journalists, teachers, etc.);

- at many levels of authority within any occupation;

- as having achieved success in many fields of endeavour (sports, arts, public life, etc.).

Subliminal messages of pity, undervaluing or difference can be conveyed by position or focus on a disabled person. Avoid positioning for display or lingering camera focus which highlights difference (especially focusing on aids such as wheelchairs or guide dogs).

For oral communications, disabled persons should not be excluded simply because of speech, hearing or communication difficulties:

- use of sign language interpreters, where appropriate;

- use voice-over (both male and female) where applicable;

- where opinions are canvassed orally and visually, include disabled persons;

- include disabled people who can speak for themselves, or use sign language, interpreters and interveners.

7.4 Alternate media

The Government Communications Policy states: "Institutions must pursue fair communications practices ... by taking all reasonable measures to communicate effectively with disabled persons ...."

The Canadian Human Rights Act and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms would appear to reinforce this right of disabled Canadians to have access to government publications and information in a usable form, as well as creating legal rights of appeal. Print-handicapped Canadians might well ask why they are taxed for a service they cannot use.

Communicators, whether planning publications or advertisements, should always consider alternate media including, as appropriate, audio tapes, braille, extra-large print versions and open and closed captioning for video material, including advertising. The information needs of persons with disabilities vary as widely as those of the general public.

Media other than print are required for material that:

- is needed by individuals to make use of a service or program for which they are or may be eligible, or involving a legal obligation (income tax, voting, legal and civil rights, postal regulations, social benefits etc.);

- is required for public understanding of a significant, new government priority, policy or program;

- informs the public about dangers to health, safety or the environment; or

- for which there is a significant public demand in a specific alternate media format.

Communicating the availability of material in alternate media is vital if disabled persons are to benefit. Newsletters and the telephone newslines of community organizations can be of assistance. Institutions should consider printing a statement in their publications such as:

- Individuals who are unable to read or use this document because of a disability may contact the departmental publications officer and ask for it to be transcribed into a more accessible medium such as audiotape, braille or large print. The department will take every reasonable step to ensure that access is provided.

Or, preferably, a message stating:

- This document is available in alternate media (specify which). Please contact __________ for further information.

The reading needs of the blind or vision-impaired are the same as those of other persons and that means the time frame for making information available in alternate media should be the same as for printed material, or as close to the same as possible.

The National Library of Canada's Library Service for Disabled Persons can be of major assistance to all institutions.

- Institutions should consider producing at least four copies of any publication in alternate format, the first for retention, the second to fulfil a request, the third and fourth for deposit with the Legal Deposit Office of the National Library of Canada. Mailing address:

Canadiana Acquisitions Division and Legal Deposit Office
Attention: Government Documents
National Library of Canada
Ottawa, Canada K1A 0N4
Telephone: (819) 997-9565

- If the requester needs to keep the transcribed publication, the institution might wish to provide it free. If it elects to charge for the transcribed document, the amount charged should be the same as that charged for the print publication. The institution's library or public affairs unit are ideal repositories for the alternate media copy.

- If the requester does not wish to purchase the transcribed publication, but prefers to consult and then return it (as most people can do with the print version in their local library), the borrower can then ask a local library to arrange an inter-library loan from the National Library. This option ensures total equality

When a special-format publication is sent to the National Library, the following occurs:

- The publication is listed in Canadiana, the national bibliography.

- The publication is added to the CANUC:H data base, a fundamental resource for all libraries serving disabled persons in Canada, who use it to locate the documents that their clients need.

- The National Library lends the special-format publication to other libraries for the use of persons with disabilities. This makes it unnecessary for institutions to become directly involved in simple loan transactions.

8. Implementation

Each institution is responsible for ensuring that these guidelines are followed in all of its communications activities and for assessing whether its communications, both internal and external, are consistent with them.

They should ensure that these guidelines are available to employees in headquarters, regional and district offices and to private sector organizations and individuals who are preparing material to which the policy and guidelines apply.

The following responsibility centres are areas in which distribution of the guidelines would have a significant impact:

- ministers' offices,

- deputy ministers' offices,

- parliamentary relations offices,

- senior management committees,

- personnel, training and staff relations,

- program planning units,

- public affairs,

- translation services.

This list does not limit the application of the policy.

Status of Women Canada, in keeping with its mandate, will continue to monitor government communications in order to bring instances of sexual stereotyping to the attention of the institution(s) involved, and to endeavour to ensure equal representation of women in government communications.

9.Enquiries

All enquiries about these guidelines should be routed through departmental headquarters to the Head of Communications. For questions on interpretation of the policy, headquarters should contact the Information, Communications and Security Policy Division, Chief Information Officer Branch, Treasury Board Secretariat of Canada.

Enquiries about individual target groups should be directed to the Heads of Communications at these institutions in Ottawa:

Status of Women Canada

Human Resources Development Canada

- Status of Disabled Persons Secretariat
- Multiculturalism Secretariat
- Native Citizens' Directorate.


Appendix F
Best Practices in Media Relations

1. Introduction

These guidelines reaffirm the corporate value of openness in government through sound ongoing relations with representatives of the news media. Institutions can communicate policies, programs and services more effectively through the media by working with media relations specialists.

With the support of the minister and senior managers and the advice of media relations specialists, designated government spokepersons will be able to speak with confidence and authority. This will lend credibility to the information they provide and thus to their institutions and the Public Service.

Media relations specialists, departmental policy advisers and program managers share responsibility and accountability for operational media relations. This shared management function ensures that the public receives timely and accurate information which helps to create a climate of honesty and trust. In turn, this gives the institution and the minister further opportunities to communicate vital messages to Canadians.

Institutions are encouraged to adapt these practices to their operational needs and limitations.

2. Objective

The guidelines on best practices in media relations are designed to help federal institutions to communicate with Canadians through open and effective relations with the media.

3. Guidelines

3.1 Media relations management

(a) Institutions should provide journalists with a single point of access for information. A list of telephone numbers of government departments and agencies for media enquiries should be made available to the media and updated periodically.

(b) Institutions should maintain a list of designated spokespersons at headquarters and in the regions with the authority to speak to the media on matters within their areas of expertise.

(c) Designated spokespersons should have the authority and information they require to communicate openly with the media on matters of fact or approved government policy.

(d) Interviews should be on-the-record and for attribution by name and title. Background briefings without attribution should have the minister's approval.

(e) Commitments to the media should be honoured and delays, postponements or cancellations of commitments explained promptly and clearly.

(f) Media relations specialists who coordinate media enquiries should have direct access to designated spokespersons to help them prepare effective and timely responses to journalists.

(g) Media relations specialists should coordinate media relations training for designated spokespersons.

(h) Program managers and spokespersons are encouraged to seek advice and assistance from media relations specialists on speaking to media representatives, on potential media interest in issues and on the suitability of material prepared for the media.

(i) Designated spokespersons should inform media relations specialists of contacts with the media and provide them with timely reports of their interviews with journalists.

(j) Material prepared for the news media should be distributed in the most timely and effective manner in order to reach media organizations and journalists who have a special interest in the subject.

(k) With the guidance of media relations specialists, factual errors, misquotes and misleading information attributed to an institution or a designated spokesperson in print media or by electronic broadcast should be corrected promptly.

(l) The lead institution on a particular issue should consult other concerned departments on communications priorities and requirements as well as coordinate media activities.

(m) Media relations specialists, in consultation with program managers and communications staff, should explore the best use of modern techniques to disseminate information to target publics - through, for example, corporate newsletters, third-party endorsements, electronic bulletin boards, telemessaging, community newspapers and public affairs programs on cable television.

3.2 Media relations planning

(a) Heads of communications should ensure that institutions have the appropriate expertise to manage media relations activities at headquarters and in the regions.

(b) Heads of communications should encourage institutions to hire media relations and other communications specialists with appropriate expertise in media relations activities.

(c) Heads of communications should establish a process for daily liaison between media relations specialists and the minister's and deputy head's offices and parliamentary relations staff in order to review emerging issues, assess ongoing activities and plan briefings, events and major initiatives.

(d) Briefing notes and background information for responses to the media should be available to program managers, media relations or communications specialists, and designated spokespersons.

(e) Material developed for the media should be written in clear and simple language; deal with major objectives of the government, the minister and the institution; and demonstrate, as much as possible, the relevance of government initiatives to the regions.

(f) Program managers, in consultation with media relations or communications specialists, should identify opportunities for ministers and government officials to communicate with the public and the news media.

(g) Communications plans to support government initiatives should include media and distribution strategies directed at the journalists and specialized media most interested in the initiatives.

3.3 Media monitoring and analysis

(a) Institutions should provide effective environmental analysis - either in-house or by purchasing the service - to identify, monitor and track emerging issues and trends. This should include scanning newspapers, radio and television news and current affairs programs, magazines, trade journals, focus group reports, House of Commons and Senate proceedings, public opinion surveys, synopses of access to information and privacy requests, records of telephone enquiries from the public and the media, correspondence, public consultation reports, trend monitoring reports, academic journals and demographic statistics.

(b) Regional and local offices should contribute to this scanning exercise in a timely way.

(c) A daily media monitoring and analysis package, either computer or paper-based, should be prepared. It should include a selection of major articles and electronic media transcripts or summaries representing national and regional issues that are relevant to the institution. This should be made available early in the day.

(d) Institutions are encouraged to disseminate their monitoring packages electronically.

(e) Institutions are encouraged to share all information on subjects of common interest scanned from news sources with other departments.

(f) Institutions are encouraged to store information obtained from news sources in a data bank.

3.4 The role of media relations in crisis management

(a) Crisis management teams should include media relations specialists.

(b) Heads of communications should provide ongoing reports on the crisis to the Privy Council Office.

(c) On critical issues and where circumstances warrant, the head of communications should assign a bilingual spokesperson to communicate with journalists.

(d) The spokesperson should provide journalists with brief, specific and clear information approved by the institution's crisis management team.

(e) Institutions should monitor and analyse emerging issues continually during the crisis.

(f) After a crisis, the spokesperson is encouraged to keep journalists aware of developments on the issues.

3.5 Media relations evaluation

(a) Heads of Communications should have media relations activities assessed systematically to ensure that:

- effective, quality services are provided at a reasonable cost;

- media relations specialists and spokespersons have proper delegation and accountability measures are in place;

- media relations specialists and designated spokespersons have the information and training they need to do their jobs effectively; and

- exemplary practices are shared with other institutions.

(b) Institutions are encouraged to consult with reporters, editors and news managers periodically to review the quality of the services.