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Democratic Good Government Pledge

You can help appeal to politicians across Canada to sign the Democratic Good Government Pledge.

Helping with the Democratic Good Government Pledge campaign is simple, download a copy (in PDF or RTF) and send or take it to your town, city, provincial, territorial or federal politician, and election candidates, and their staff, appointees and government employees, and ask them to sign.

Please let us know which politicians, candidates, and government officials you are appealing to, and if and when they sign the Pledge, by sending us an email with “Democratic Good Government Pledge” in the Subject line.  You can find the contact information for your federal, and provincial or territorial politicians here.

The System is the Scandal and no one should be surprised that Canadian governments, politicians, government employees, corporations and big business executives act dishonestly, unethically, secretively, unrepresentatively or wastefully — the system allows them to do so through weak rules, weak enforcement, and weak penalties. This is not at all to say that all, most or even many politicians, government employees or corporate executives are dishonest, unethical, secretive, non-representative or wasteful — but if any of these people act in these ways they will often not be caught, let alone penalized, because of loopholes in laws and rules and weak enforcement systems.

The law and enforcement systems do not go far enough to require politicians, their staff, appointees, government employees, and election candidates to act and make decisions in ways that ensure the democratic good government that Canadians expect and want.

This is why Democracy Watch developed the 7-point Democratic Good Government Pledge. The Pledge is simple and brief and can be taken by any politician, political staff person, appointee, or government official. It outlines a commitment for these people:

  1. To be honest by telling the truth, not withholding information or putting a “spin” on things, and not slandering anyone;
  2. To be ethical by exceeding the requirements of ethics law by not asking for or accepting gifts from anyone trying to influence them, and not participating in decisions where they or their friends or family have any kind of direct or indirect personal interest, and not using government property for themselves or their political party;;
  3. To be open by exceeding the requirements of open government laws by disclosing all details of their on-the-job expenses, and details about all communications with anyone trying to influence them, and details about government decision-making processes;
  4. To be representative by taking the time to understand stakeholders and citizens concerned with decisions, assisting all constituents fairly with their needs, and not trying to force anyone to vote any way other than how a majority of their constituents want;
  5. To be waste-preventing by seeking the lowest financial cost for effectively accomplishing anything and by using competitive processes for all spending; and
  6. To be respectful by discussing issues with facts, evidence, logic, and principles, refraining from heckling, and not attacking others with exaggerated claims.
  7. To support positive changes by voting in favour of bills and changes to codes, policies guidelines etc. that require everyone in politics to uphold the standards set out in the six sections listed above

Download a copy of Democracy Watch’s Democratic Good Government Pledge: PDF Format —  RTF Format

Current Signees (as of Jan. 2, 2013)