Inside Politics

UPDATED: Canadian Heritage Minister Shelly Glover statement on riding fundraiser

Earlier this evening, Canadian Heritage Minister Shelly Glover's office released a statement on a fundraising event in her Winnipeg riding that it would seem could have -- but apparently did not -- gone horribly ethically wrong had she not taken steps to preemptively address the potential appearance of conflict of interest that would have resulted from accepting donations from members of the local arts community who have or have had dealings with her department. 

(Which, to be clear, it seems she did not -- or, at least, not for long once she realized the source.)

That statement in full: 

Last night, Minister Glover attended a fundraising event in her riding hosted by members of her EDA who happen to also be very active in the Winnipeg arts community.  The Minister was not personally involved in any of the planning for this event, and arrived with the understanding she would be meeting with EDA members and others from Saint Boniface.

Upon arrival, however, she learned that the attendees were also largely members of the Winnipeg arts community, some of whom have or have had dealings with the Department of Canadian Heritage. These guests provided a $50 donation to her EDA to attend, and one of them offered a $500 donation separately. Given the fact that some of the attendees have dealings with the Department of Canadian Heritage, the Minister decided that any conflicts of interest - real or apparent - must not occur.

Immediately following the event, she instructed the EDA not to accept any funds from this event.

All individuals attending have had cheques returned to them, or their credit cards will not be charged. Her EDA has also been instructed to avoid such situations in the future.

The Minister has written to the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner to make her aware of this situation and the steps she has taken to deal with it, and seek guidance on any additional actions. 

It seems that Glover's decision to reject those donations may have been preceded by a visit from a local CTV reporter, who turned up on the doorstep of the event to question the minister over the propriety of the event -- which, according to the invite, specifically targeted the Winnipeg "cultural community": glover-invite-2.jpg

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