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Contests and Lotteries Policy

Purpose and Scope

This policy ensures that the Oakville Public Library (OPL) is compliant with all legislation related to contests and lotteries, and outlines the circumstances in which it is appropriate for OPL staff, board members, volunteers and/or family members to participate in OPL contests.


According to the Competition Act, a promotional contest is defined "as any contest, lottery, game of chance or skill, or mixed chance and skill, or disposition of any product or other benefit by any mode of chance, skill, or mixed chance and skill, for the purpose of promoting, directly or indirectly, the supply or use of a product, or for the purpose of promoting, directly or indirectly, any business interest."


Contests and Lotteries

In order to comply with applicable legislation, OPL commits to providing the following information to the public for each contest it runs:

  • Number and value of prizes
  • Geographic area(s) to which the prizes relate
  • Skill testing question requirement (if there is one)
  • Contest closing date
  • Any important information relating to the chances of winning (such as odds of winning)
  • Method of selecting winners (i.e. skill or random)
  • Method of no purchase entry

OPL also commits to contacting winners and/or distributing prizes as soon as possible after the contest closing date.

OPL, as a public library constituted under the Public Libraries Act, is not eligible for a lottery license, and therefore can not run a lottery to raise funds. To be considered a "contest" and not a "lottery" the contest must be free for the public to enter and/or there must be a method of "no purchase entry" available to the public.

Participation in OPL Contests

The intent of promotional contests is to encourage increased awareness and/or use of an OPL program or service by the public.

In order that there be no perception of bias, OPL staff, board members and volunteers may not participate in any OPL contest open to members of the public. Even in the case where an OPL staff member, board member and/or volunteer may be considered to be participating as a customer (i.e. attending an adult program with a door prize), they are still not eligible to participate in the contest component of the program.

Immediate family members of OPL staff, board members and volunteers may only participate in OPL contests where the winners are chosen randomly.

Effective Date: November 28, 2013 Motion#: 13.11.115
Next Review Date: 2017
Supersedes Policy Dated: September 24/09, Jun 23/05, May 23/02, Sep17/85 Motion #: 09.09.80, 05.06.75,02.05.67,85.63
Manuals this policy is included in: Board Manual, Public Service Manual (Sect. 5.6), HR Manual, added to Website