It is the purpose of this Code of Conduct to outline certain basic rules for persons appointed as members of the Edmonton Police Commission (Commission) so that they may carry out their entrusted duties with impartiality and dignity, recognizing that the function of the Edmonton Police Commission is, at all times, service to its community and the public.
The members of the Commission will achieve effective governance and oversight by fulfilling their roles and responsibilities under the Police Act and will exercise their official duties and functions in such a manner that public confidence and trust in the integrity and objectivity of the Commission are conserved and enhanced.
While this policy covers a wide range of practices and procedures, the guidelines presented here are not exhaustive, and it is acknowledged that no articulation of policies and procedures to govern conduct can anticipate all situations. The Code of Conduct applies to all Commission members.
Elected office: applies to statutory elections set out in municipal, provincial, and federal legislation.
Political activity: political related activities include canvassing, campaigning, and fundraising, that aim to advance an individual’s or a group’s interests. This includes, but is not limited to, post, solicit, distribute, wear, or otherwise display political material or messages during board meetings and board-related activities. (This includes vehicles and equipment.)
- Commissioners are expected to comply with the spirit and letter of all laws, regulations, policies, and procedures applicable to the Commission, including, but not limited to, the Police Act.
- Govern their conduct in accordance with the requirements and obligations set out in the Province of Alberta Police Act and Regulations, and the bylaws and policies of the City of Edmonton and the Edmonton Police Commission Policy Manual.
- Commission members are expected to conduct themselves in such a way as to protect the Commission’s reputation and to conduct all business on behalf of the Commission fairly and honestly.
- Preserve the integrity and impartiality of the Commission and of City Council.
- At all times conduct themselves in a manner that is respectful and courteous of other Commissioners, Commission staff, members of the Edmonton Police Service, and the public.
- Not use their position to secure any special privileges, favours, or exemptions for themselves or any other person.
- Not use their position to advance their interests or the interests of any person or organization with whom or with which they are associated.
- Be politically neutral in the performance of their Commission duties.
- A Commissioner may participate in political activity; however, such activity must be conducted during non-Commission time and outside of the Commission office.
- A Commissioner may not make use of information obtained during their course of work with the Commission for political purposes.
- Commission members must take an approved leave of absence when running for elected office.
- Commissioners must resign from the Commission if successfully elected.
- Not use their position as Commissioner to obtain employment with the Edmonton Police Commission or Edmonton Police Service for themselves, family members, close associates, or their firms.
- If a Commissioner is considered for employment with the Commission, then they must temporarily withdraw from the Commission. If the Commissioner is successful in gaining employment, they shall immediately resign from the Commission.
- A Commissioner shall immediately resign if a family member (parent, spouse, and child) gains employment with the Commission.
- Not attempt to exercise individual authority over the Commission or the Edmonton Police Service. Commission members have no individual authority over the Chief of Police and other Edmonton Police Service members.
- Commissioners will be governed by the guidelines set out in the Commission’s policy on Communications and Media Relations and will not speak to the media on behalf of the Commission unless delegated to do so by the Commission Chairperson. The Chair will be the spokesperson for the Commission. Delegation of this authority may be made from time to time to designated members of the Commission.
- If speaking to the media in their individual capacity, individual Commissioners must notify the media that they are not speaking as a spokesperson for the Commission.
- A Commissioner who expresses disagreement with a decision of the Commission shall make it clear that the member is expressing a personal opinion and not the opinion of the Commission.
- If Commissioners use social media platforms then their comments and activities will be governed by the EPC’s policy on Social Media and a Commissioner may not avoid this, or other applicable policy, by changing the name or identifier on their social media account(s).
- Keep confidential any information discussed at an in-camera or closed meeting.
- Abide by their Oath of Office.
- Attend and actively participate in Commission meetings and notify the Chair or Executive Director of any anticipated absences.
- Not interfere with the management or day to day operations of the Service.
- Avail themselves of training or educational opportunities that may be provided for them to assist in carrying out their duties.
- Commissioners should not assume that any unethical activities not covered by or specifically prohibited by these guidelines of conduct, or by any legislation, are therefore condoned. Any Commission member uncertain of their duties in any particular circumstance should raise this concern with the Commission Chair, Executive Director or the Commission’s legal counsel in order to obtain appropriate guidance and advice.
- Any Commission member who becomes aware that another Commission member may have breached the Code of Conduct shall bring the matter forward to the Commission.
- All suspected breaches will follow the procedures outlined in EPC policy Appendix C – Reporting a Code of Conduct Breach.
- For a period of 12 months after leaving the Commission, abide by the ethical standards of conduct listed above, except those related to confidential information which shall apply in perpetuity.
1. Appendix C – Reporting a Code of Conduct Breach
2. City of Edmonton – Ethical Guidelines For Citizens Who Serve On City Boards, Agencies and Committees
3. EPC Policy #4.2.4 – Social Media
4. 5.3.3. Communications and Media Relations