Political Candidacy for Academic Staff [October 28, 1971]

University of Toronto Governing Council

Political Candidacy for Academic Staff

October 28, 1971

To request an official copy of this policy, contact:

The Office of the Governing Council
Room 106, Simcoe Hall 27 King’s College Circle University of Toronto Toronto, Ontario
M5S 1A1

Phone: 416-978-6576
Fax: 416-978-8182
E-mail: governing.council@utoronto.ca
Website: http://www.governingcouncil.utoronto.ca/

Political Candidacy for Academic Staff


Members of the academic profession ought to be as free as the members of any other profession to choose to enter public life. There is an obligation upon the University as an institution to see to it that no impediments are placed in the way of a member of the academic staff with a desire for enter public life.

Some members of the academic community can make worthwhile contributions to political life, and this fact should be recognized.

(1) A member of the academic staff of the University of Toronto who is considering becoming a candidate for public office shall consult with the Chairman of his Department (or the Director of his School, Institute, etc.) about the effect of his political candidacy on the academic welfare of the Department, bearing in mind (a) his short-term absence during the campaign period, (b) his possible long-term absence, and (c) the possibility of his continuing some academic duties on a part-time basis if the demands of his public service permit. If the Chairman of his Department or the Dean of his Faculty objects to his candidacy he shall state the grounds of his objection both to the prospective candidate and to the Dean or the President. No Chairman or Dean, while such, shall become a candidate for public office.

(2) If there is no objection to the candidacy, the staff member shall be entitled to leave of absence with full salary during the campaign for election upon the following basis:

(i) for election to the Parliament of Canada: leave for the equivalent of one month;
(ii) for election to the Legislature of Ontario: leave for the equivalent of one month;
(iii) for election to a Municipal Council or Board of Education: leave for the equivalent of five days;
(iv) for election as Mayor of Toronto or Chairman of the Toronto Metropolitan Council, or the Toronto Board of Control: leave for the equivalent of ten days.

The period of leave in each case need not be taken on consecutive days or necessarily in whole days. This entitlement shall apply to the candidate’s first and second campaigns, but to none thereafter, except that where he is defeated in his first candidacy and elected on his second, he may claim the same entitlement if he is a candidate at the next succeeding election.

(3) If the staff member is elected he shall, while serving in the office to which he has been elected, if he holds an appointment, other than a sessional appointment, be entitled to leave of absence upon the following basis:

(i) Parliament: leave of absence without salary for a period up to five years;
(ii) Legislature: leave of absence for attendance at the sittings of the Legislature, subject to a pro rata reduction in salary;
(iii) Municipal Council or Board of Education: leave of absence for attendance at sittings of the Council or Board, subject to a pro rata reduction in salary, if significant;
(iv) Mayor of Toronto, Chairman of the Toronto Metropolitan Council, or the Toronto Board of Control: leave of absence without salary.

(4) During the extended leave, the academic member shall have all the normal rights of members on leave of absence.

(5) If a member of the University staff, whether serving as such or on leave granted to him on election to Parliament or the Legislature, is appointed a Minister of the Crown, he will be expected to resign his university post.

(6) Arrangements involving full-time leave of absence normally shall hold for one term of public service or five years1, whichever is the longer. If the member continues to serve after the five- year period, then he will be expected to resign his university post. If, thereafter, he wishes to return to the University, his appointment shall be by a procedure similar to that used for an original appointment. Arrangments involving part-time leave of absence may be renewed beyond the five-year so long as the duties of the member of staff to the University do not suffer.

(7) After the expiry of his term of public service, the member of staff, if he has not resigned from the University in accordance with the provisions of (6), shall return to the University without reduction in rank, and it shall be incumbent on the Chairman of his Department to arrange his programme so as to facilitate his return to full academic effectiveness.

(8) These conditions shall not preclude the possibility of making other mutually acceptable arrangements.


1 This five years is a somewhat arbitrary estimate of the period after which the professor may be considered to have entered the political profession fully and the period after which he may be sufficiently out of touch with his field to warrant his having to be reinstated by the normal method of entry to professorial rank.