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Society Operating Guidelines

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Our Society Operating Guidelines describe in detail the manner in which American Society of Safety Professionals is structured and governed. They are intended to accompany and be consistent with ASSP bylaws.

Section 6.10: Campaigning for ASSP Office

I. Purpose and Scope

These guidelines outline the expectations of campaign conduct by candidates and others. The rules outlined in this Society Operating Guideline apply from the time that a candidate submits materials until the election closes. In addition to the campaign expectations outlined in these guidelines, all members are expected to uphold our Code of Professional Conduct.

The purpose of these guidelines is to ensure that:

  • All candidates are treated fairly.
  • All parties understand appropriate campaign activities.
  • Members have sufficient information to make informed choices in elections.

II. Campaigning

For ASSP election purposes, “campaigning” is defined as activities designed to increase a candidate’s chances of being elected. This includes mentioning one’s candidacy or making any statement that might be interpreted as a position statement reflecting what actions the candidate would take if elected. It does not include functions performed as part of a candidate’s normal work and/or ASSP activities.

Each candidate must submit a written platform statement on the issues faced by the organization and to describe relevant experience that qualifies the candidate for the elected position. Candidates’ statements, biographies and photos will be accessible to members on the our elections web pages.

In all cases, members are expected to focus on their own platform when sharing communications and messaging related to their candidacy.

III. Candidates

Candidates shall: 

  • Clearly, completely and concisely state their individual views on issues affecting ASSP so that members can select a candidate that best represents them.
  • Provide requested materials for ASSP to post, distribute and include on ballots and via ASSP communications channels in a timely manner during the campaign process.
  • Exhibit professionalism and emotional maturity, and always be courteous and respectful to other candidates, current officers, ASSP members and staff.
  • Use the official materials provided by ASSP, including both candidates’ biographies, platform statements and photographs, in communications about the election.
  • Limit unsolicited campaign communications, e-mails and social media postings.
  • Participate where possible with the opposing candidate in solicited communications, social media, forums, presentations and public dialogue.
  • Limit campaigning at an ASSP activity/event (e.g., chapter meeting, conference, webinar) to personal interactions between the candidate and event attendees, unless both candidates are present and/or the event is hosted by the candidate’s home chapter.
  • Continue to fulfill any current roles or positions within ASSP.
  • Encourage members to review campaign materials and participate in the election process.

Candidates shall not:

  • Use their current position within ASSP to an advantage.
  • Use ASSP or ASSP unit (e.g., chapter) funds, personal funds, staff resources, mailing lists or contact information to solicit individual support.

IV. ASSP Units and Officers

ASSP units (chapters, practices specialties, common interest groups, regions, areas and sections) and officers shall:

  • Exhibit professionalism and emotional maturity, and always be courteous and respectful to candidates, current officers, ASSP members and staff.
  • Use the official materials provided by ASSP, including both candidates’ biographies, platform statements, videos and photographs, in communications about the election.
  • Solicit both candidates for a position to engage unit members in public discussion about their positions on ASSP issues, qualifications for office and platform statements. This includes in-person, social media and other communications forums.
  • Encourage members to review campaign materials and participate in the election process.

ASSP units, officers, members of the Nominations and Elections Committee and members of the Board of Directors shall not:

  • Endorse a candidate.
  • Use their current position within ASSP to a candidate’s advantage.
  • Use ASSP or ASSP unit funds, personal funds, staff resources, mailing lists or contact information to support a candidate.

V. ASSP Members

Members shall:

  • Exhibit professionalism and emotional maturity, and always be courteous and respectful to candidates, current officers, ASSP members and staff.
  • Limit unsolicited campaign communications, emails and social media postings.
  • Review ASSP campaign materials and participate in the election process.
  • Engage other members to review ASSP campaign materials and participate in the election process.

Members shall not: 

  • Use ASSP or ASSP unit funds, personal funds, staff resources, mailing lists or contact information to support a candidate.

VI. Infractions

The Nominations and Elections Committee will review allegations of an infraction of this Society Operating Guideline and determine a fair and just consequence for violations. Members may appeal findings of the Nominations and Elections Committee to the Board of Directors. 


Approved By | Date: Board of Directors |12/2019
Replaces Edition Dated:
Next Revision Due: 12/2022