Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
Some candidates switching to personal email
Well, that’s interesting, and certainly puts me in my place — turns out that it’s OK for school board candidates to use their taxpayer-funded email accounts for political purposes.
Um, maybe not necessarily OK, but policies do not prevent their doing so.
But in another odd twist, by 9:30 a.m. today, three incumbent candidates in Louis Riel S.D. using school divisions’ email had switched over to a personal email account.
I raised the issue in this blog yesterday.
Louis Riel and Pembina Trails school divisions got back to me to say that nothing in their policies prevents trustees from using their taxpayer-financed division email accounts as their contact address in their re-election campaigns.
But by early morning, Louis Riel trustees Louise Johnston and Tom Parker had switched over to a personal email account.
In the case of Sunrise S.D., there is no rule to prevent any employee using the division email to run for office, so Louis Riel trustee Dave Richardson, who works for Sunrise, was OK. I say ‘was’, because as of 9:30 a.m. today, Richardson has switched over to a Hotmail account.
Pembina Trails incumbent Gerry Melnyk is still using a division email account.
No word yet from Seven Oaks S.D. on whether incumbent Richard Sawka should be using his division email account.
U of M has a lengthy policy about appropriate use. It’s open to interpretation, says the university, but the bottom line is that there are provisions for using U of M email for community service, and basically the policy allows use that isn’t prohibited. So Louis Riel candidate and U of M employee Alem Asghedom may continue to use his U of M business email for his political campaign.
But I still don’t think it’s right.
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About Nick Martin
Nick Martin is the old bearded guy at the back of the newsroom, the most experienced reporter at the Winnipeg Free Press, having started his career in Ontario in 1971.
He’s been covering education for the Free Press since the spring of 1997, after decades primarily covering municipal politics, including a four-year stint at the Ontario legislature for the London Free Press.
Nick moved to Manitoba in 1988 with his Winnipeg-born wife, who is a professor at the University of Manitoba. They have two kids, both of whom graduated from Grant Park High School: son Chris and daughter Gillian.
Nick has won a national journalism award from the Canadian Association of University Teachers, two Manitoba Human Rights Journalism awards, and the Ontario Reporters Association investigative award.
Nick is a long-distance runner, having finished and survived 18 marathons and 15 half-marathons and 30-kilometre races, and having (barely) survived 10 years as an outdoor and indoor soccer coach.
Nick became a soccer referee in 2007, delighting in his 60s in outrunning 16-year-olds and keeping his distance from obstreperous coaches and parents.
Nick and his wife have discovered a mutual love for kayaking at their Whiteshell cottage, and are both regulars at the Reh-Fit Centre. They hold season tickets to both the Manitoba Theatre Centre and the Warehouse, and as empty nesters, have rediscovered the joys of an active winter vacation.
A native of Jarrow-on-Tyne, England, Nick is a member of the Toon Army as a Newcastle United supporter, and a proud citizen of Leafs Nation.
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