Policy on open board meetings
Open board meetings are conducted to provide the public with an opportunity to observe decision-making processes so that the public may gain an understanding of the rationale for plans and decisions. The purpose of this policy is to ensure the appropriate conduct of the board’s business while maintaining accountability to stakeholder groups, the public and the media.
Members of the public are permitted to attend open meetings of the board in accordance with the following policy.
There are times when it is necessary to go to an in-camera board discussion. An in camera session is only open to board members and invited guests. The agenda, minutes and related materials for the in camera session are only provided to board members and others who are identified by the board chair.
Attending a meeting of the board
- Meeting dates, times and locations are available through the Board Office. Please contact Pam Freeman at 416-785-2500 ext. 5441.
- Members of the staff and general public are welcome to attend the open session of Board meetings as observers.
- Members of the public and staff must call in advance to Pam Freeman at 416-785-2500 ext. 5441 to inform the Board Office that they wish to attend.
- Members of the public and staff can address the board if they receive advance permission from the board or are specifically invited by the board to speak.
- Seating is available for staff and the general public at all open board meetings but large delegations of attendees may mean not everyone can be accommodated.
- A sign-in sheet and copies of the agenda for the open session of board meetings will be provided at the meeting. Members of the general public may be acknowledged during the meeting and may be asked to identify themselves.
- The chair of the meeting may exclude attendees for disruptive behaviour.
- Videotaping, recording equipment and cameras are not permitted at Board meetings without the permission of the chair of the meeting.
- Minutes of the open session of all Board meetings are available online after board approval.
Addressing a meeting of the board
- Any individual or group wishing to address the Board of Directors must submit written notice of the request at least two weeks prior to the meeting date to the Board Office.
- The request must include a brief description of the specific matter to be addressed which can be included in the Board information package if approved by the chair of the Board of Directors.
- The chair will review the request and the group or individual will be notified no less than one week in advance of the meeting date as to whether the request can be accommodated and its appropriateness to be presented to the board. The board chair may refer requests to other committees.
- Presentations must be limited to a maximum of five minutes. If the address is based on the submission of a group, one person must be identified as the spokesperson for the group.
- Presentations may be declined. Reasons for declining a presentation may include a time restrictions, inappropriate or irrelevant content, etc.
- Presentations will usually be heard at the beginning of the meeting and will be noted on the meeting agenda.
- The board will receive agreed-to presentations but is not obligated to respond or take action on these presentations.
- A person or group may only address the board on a particular subject once during a 12-month period.
- Examples of topics that might be addressed to the board: community input into strategic directions, messages of thanks, information about trends in the healthcare system.
For information on board meetings and minutes call Pam Freeman in the Board Office at 416-785-2500 ext. 5441.