Use of UUCCSM Facilities by Political Candidates

Approved by the Board of Directors June 12, 2007

I. Renting church facilities to political candidates

Political candidates wishing to use the church’s meeting facilities shall be charged for their use at the same rate they would were they using them for any other private purpose. Publicity for such events shall clearly show that the program is not sponsored by the church.

II. Inviting a political candidate to speak in a non-candidate capacity

Political candidates may be invited to speak at the church in a non-candidate capacity if:

a. Neither the candidate nor any other person mentions the campaign, the election, or the person's status as a candidate;
b. No campaign activity occurs in connection with the candidate's attendance; and
c. Promotional materials do not mention that the person is a candidate

III. Inviting political candidates to speak as candidates

Political candidates may be invited in their capacity as candidates if:

a. The church provides an equal opportunity to all other candidates seeking the same office to speak at a similar event;
b. The church explicitly states it does not support or oppose the candidate in communications concerning the candidate’s attendance and when the candidate is introduced;
c. No one distributes literature on behalf of the candidate; and
d. No political fundraising occurs.

IV. Presenting a public forum

Several candidates may appear at the same event if:

a. Nothing in the presentation suggests a bias toward any candidate or candidates;
b. Questions for the candidate do not suggest a bias;
c. Topics cover a broad range of issues relevant to the position the candidate is seeking;
d. Each candidate receives an equal opportunity to present her or his views;
e. The candidates are not asked to agree or disagree with positions taken by the church; and
f. The moderator does not comment in a way that expresses approval or disapproval of a candidate.

V. Individuals endorsing candidates

No employee, trustee, or representative of the church shall mention their church affiliation in endorsing a candidate without making it clear that they are speaking as an individual and not in their church capacity.

No committee or individual in the church shall distribute at the church any printed materials suggesting support of any political candidate. The church shall not print any materials supporting a candidate.

VI. Promoting a legislative issue

Lobbying, or promoting legislative issues, may be done, but not as the primary activity of the church. Activities promoting legislation shall not suggest the endorsement of any political candidate.

The church may distribute brochures, sponsor speakers, and in general promote a position adopted by the church, the UUA, or the UU Legislative Ministry of California.