A new federal code curbs lobbying by Canadians involved in “political work” including unpaid campaign volunteers. Revisions to the Lobbyists’ Code Of Conduct, the first in eight years, are to take effect July 1.

“The objective of this Code is to foster transparent and ethical lobbying of federal officials,” Lobbying Commissioner Nancy Bélanger wrote in a legal notice Saturday. “This Code works in concert with the ethical regimes that apply to federal officials.”

The new Code includes a new “sense of obligation” clause to restrict lobbying of any public office holder “where the official could reasonably be seen to have a sense of obligation to you because of political work, paid or unpaid.” The clause defines “political work” as organizing or managing any campaign, raising funds, volunteering, “soliciting or gathering donations,” “disseminating campaign materials” or acting as a spokesperson, researcher, analyst or campaign advertiser.

The restriction would not apply to lobbyists who are party members, donors, visitors at campaign rallies or lobbyists who express “personal political opinions” or “display election signs” on their property

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