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Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation

In compliance with Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL), emails sent from an account will have an opt out message at the bottom (footer). Recipients of emails will have the option to unsubscribe from further communications sent by VSB email addresses.

Messages sent to parents and other clients are designed to be purposeful whether informational or of a commercial nature. We strongly encourage you, when asked, to provide your consent to receive commercial electronic messages from your children’s school(s) and the VSB. This will ensure that you do not miss out on important messages designed for you and this will also assist the VSB and its schools in reducing the use of paper and making our processes more efficient.


What is CASL?

Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) came into effect July 1st, 2014. The main focus of CASL is to prevent Canadian “inboxes” from being filled with commercial electronic messages that are sent without consent and without the provision of contact information and unsubscribe links.

In response to this need, the Federal Government enacted “An Act to promote the efficiency and adaptability of the Canadian economy by regulating certain activities that discourage reliance on electronic means of carrying out commercial activities, and to amend the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Act, the Competition Act, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act and the Telecommunications Act” S.C. 2010, c. 23. This legislation is commonly referred to as Canada’s Anti-Spam Law or CASL.

The stated purpose of the legislation “is to promote the efficiency and adaptability of the Canadian economy by regulating commercial conduct that discourages the use of electronic means to carry out commercial activities.” (CASL, s. 3)

Generally, CASL prohibits the sending of Commercial Electronic Messages without consent.


What is a Commercial Electronic Message (CEM)?

A CEM is any electronic message (for example, an email, text message, voicemail or message through social media) sent for the purpose of encouraging participation in a commercial activity. Commercial activities include any transaction, act or conduct that is of a commercial nature, whether or not the person who carries it out has an expectation of profit. If a message has many purposes and one of them is commercial, then it is still a CEM.

Some obvious examples of CEMs include offers to sell a product or service, offers to participate in an investment or business/commercial promotional activities.

Why does this apply to the VSB?

Some electronic messages VSB sends are CEMs. For example:

School newsletters that include CEM contentOffers for goods and services from the school
Specific invitations by VSB to respond to requests for proposalCommunications between staff about commercial activities (such as fundraising) not related to school activities

In terms of day-to-day school life, the most important example is school newsletters. Often, newsletters include offers to buy goods and services from or through the school (for example, school pictures, pizza or hot dog day, chocolate bar or cookie sales; the book fair, magazine subscriptions).

More Information

For more information on CASL, visit:

Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission

Government of Canada - Anti-Spam Legislation

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