Democracy in Canada is in very poor health. Voter turnout for the last federal election was under sixty percent.
There is much dissatisfaction with our political system. There is an impression among those who don’t vote and even for those who do that Canadian politicians are only out for themselves.
The United Party of Canada wants to give Canadians a positive option on the future of our Parliamentary system. Using ideas from Democracy Watch, a Canadian organization that wants to change our system for the better, we have incorporated their desire to make our system more accountable to the Canadian voting public.
To this end our Integrity, Respect and Ethics Policy shows Canadians we want to make the following changes:
- Ministers, including the Prime Minister, M.P.’s, Senators, their staff and senior public servants must wait a minimum of two years before they can take a lobbying position in Ottawa.
- No Ministers, M.P.’s, Senators can make policy decisions in areas where they have a financial interest of any type.
- Lobbyists will not be able to work for Ministers, M.P.’s, Senators or take a public servant position without leaving that said lobbyist position.
- No lobbyist can become a Cabinet Minister.
- No Cabinet Minister can become responsible for issues they have ever lobbied for.
- Cabinet appointees and staff of M.P.’s must have ethics rules drawn up and adhered to.
- Government documents, unless they pose a threat to national security or deal with the private information of an individual, should be accessible to the Canadian public.
- Gifts from lobbyists or international organizations seeking to influence public officials, including sponsored travel, shall be prohibited.
- No funds of any type, gifts of property or service can be provided at any time to an M.P., Senator or staff member of a M.P. or senator.
- No sitting Senator is allowed to be sitting on a board of directors of any company
- No benefits or incentives can be provided by a party to influence a M.P. to switch parties.
- Any ethics commissioner should be able to act on a complaint filed by the public.
- Ethics Commissioner and Senate Ethics Commissioner should audit anyone covered by ethics rules as required under the U.N. Convention against Corruption.
- No Ethics Commissioner should be able to make secret rulings.
The next part of the policy would require changes to the Canadian Elections Act. In order to put the power of our system, back to the Canadian public, the United Party believes that only the Canadian public should be able to fund the candidates.