The purpose of this procedure is to ensure that the Corporation of the Town of Oakville (town) communication practices are open, inclusive, transparent, effective and well managed (in accordance with the public notice and engagement guiding principles, communications standards, accessibility policy and any other related policies and procedures) to meet the needs of the community.
This procedure applies to all forms of communication to and from the town with the Oakville community, including but not limited to online, print and verbal communications.
The town values open two-way communications that involve working with the community in a co-operative and collaborative way to share information and to provide opportunities for open and constructive dialogue.
The following communication types highlight the town’s commitment to sharing and receiving information, being accountable and transparent, providing accessible channels and involving all members of the community.
English is the language of business for the town and it is a common link with the town’s diverse communities. The town uses plain language to present information so that it is easy to read, understand and is more accessible.
The town’s Translation and Interpretation procedure complements this procedure.
The corporate logo identifies the Corporation of the Town of Oakville and is used to represent town programs, services and facilities. The graphic conveys an open and inviting feel that embodies the values of the town in serving its residents, businesses and visitors. The logo has been registered under the Trademarks Act and is permitted for use by the Corporation of the Town of Oakville only.
The town crest is the ceremonial coat of arms to be used exclusively for official town business pertaining to Oakville's elected municipal officials such as official documentation and proclamations.
The town follows corporate identity standards, which outline proper use of the corporate logo, typography and colours. The standards also address proper use of editorial style and plain language.
The town’s website, oakville.ca, is the town’s primary source of information exchange with the community. Information and services on the website are updated and enhanced regularly. Other online communication channels and features include all other town-owned websites (e.g., oakvillecentre.ca, oakvilletransit.ca), social media channels (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube), RSS feeds (for public notices, service disruptions, etc.), numerous surveys and e-newsletters. The town also uses push notifications to mobile devices where available.
The town promotes its programs and services and provides information on other non-town websites where appropriate.
The town’s online communications policy complements this procedure.
The town uses email (when appropriate and in accordance with Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation) to directly inform and engage the community. The town’s Electronic Messages and Anti-spam Compliance procedure complements this procedure.
ServiceOakville is the town’s main point of contact for the community to provide and respond to questions about the town programs, services and initiatives. Information from town departments related to any external issues should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.
The Oakville Beaver newspaper is the designated community newspaper for notification as required by legislation.
Other newspapers and magazines may be used to communicate with specific audiences at the determination of department heads and within budget availability.
The town uses digital screens at Oakville Town Hall, community centres and arenas to provide information, meeting dates/times and to promote town programs, services and events.
All media releases and community advisories are published on the town’s website and circulated to Members of Council and the town’s senior management team.
The town uses publications, flyers and brochures to keep the community informed of programs, services and current events of the town.
Oakville Transit buses (interior and exterior) and transit shelters are used to promote town programs, services and events.
Signs may be used to notify or promote town programs, services and events.
Radio and television notification and communication may be used at the determination of the department head and within budget constraints.
The town uses local movie theatres to promote town programs, services and events.
Employees of the town make presentations on behalf of the corporation to promote programs and services and engage the community. Presentations made by town employees should be approved by the appropriate department head.
The Strategy, Policy and Communications department will ensure the release of corporate information that connects employees and promotes town strategic priorities through a variety of vehicles. These vehicles include but are not limited to the intranet, e-newsletter, meetings, posters, email and flyers.
The town supports the community in its outreach of community information and makes available the following resources for such communication:
The town has seven outdoor bulletin boards located throughout the community that allow the Oakville community to post information. Posting of information can be done by an individual and does not require prior approval by the town. The town has the right to remove any material that it deems unsuitable.
The locations of the outdoor community bulletin boards are:
Town Hall: non-profit, not-for-profit and community information may be placed in the pamphlet rack located near the main entrance at Town Hall. Requests for posting information should be made to the Manager, Strategic Innovation or designate for approval.
Community Centres: requests for posting of community information at community centres should be made directly to the community centre manager for approval.
Libraries: requests for posting of community information in town libraries should be sent to Information Oakville at the Oakville Public Library – Central Branch for approval. Information Oakville will coordinate the distribution of materials to the appropriate location(s).
Members of the public may display messages which advertise charitable or community services or events and which do not promote a business or product on a community mobile sign erected on designated town sites in accordance with the sign by-law.
The town does not advertise on behalf of community organizations or groups, businesses or associations.
The town will, from time to time, promote community events on its website. The town’s online communications policy, web content guidelines procedure and events calendar listing terms of reference complement this procedure.
Members of Council - the Mayor is the principal spokesperson for Town Council (person speaking on behalf of Council). As the Head of Council, the Mayor will reflect the position taken by Town Council on any specific issue.
When reflecting their own views, Members of Council should take into consideration that they may be perceived as speaking on behalf of Town Council.
Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) - is the principal spokesperson for town operations. The CAO will work with the Mayor to foster positive and open dialogue with all stakeholders.
Commissioners/Directors - act as spokespersons in their area of responsibility.
All media releases must be approved by the appropriate director and the Strategy, Policy and Communications department.
Strategy, Policy and Communications is responsible for:
Information Systems is responsible for:
Departments are responsible for:
Procedure Number: G-COM-001-002
Parent Policy: G-COM-001
Author: Strategy, Policy and Communications
Effective Date: 2010 Aug 30
Review by Date: 2021
Last Modified: 2016 Nov 14
G-COM-001-001 Public Engagement procedure
G-COM-001-002 Communications procedure
G-COM-001-003 Translation and Interpretation procedure
G-COM-001-004 Corporate Gifts procedure
G-COM-001-005 Customer Service Standards procedure
G-COM-001-006 Electronic Messages and Anti-Spam Compliance procedure
MS-ACC-001 Accessibility policy
Corporate Identity Standards
A-GEN-001 Corporate Grants, Sponsorship, Naming Rights and Advertising Sales policy
HR-MNG-006 Employee Code of Conduct policy
G-GEN-006 Code of Conduct for Members of Council and Local Board Members policy
Ontario Human Rights Code
Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act
Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005
Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation
All other relevant town policies and procedures