Labor candidates in hot water for misusing membership rolls
Party members caught scouring membership rolls without authorization for purpose of sending unsolicited campaign emails.
Labor Party candidates for Knesset who misuse membership rolls by sending unsolicited campaign emails could lose their right to run, the party's election committee has told candidates.
The statement came after the committee received complaints from registered Labor Party members over the past few days accusing some candidates of sending them unsolicited campaign emails. An internal inquiry revealed that the candidates had illegally scoured the party's membership rolls for the addresses, without authorization, in the hope of winning support in the November 29 party primary.
"Candidates will not be allowed to send email messages independently, on their own," Yitzhak Hen, the chairman of Labor's election committee said in an announcement to the candidates. He explicitly reserved the party's right to take action against "those who have already made illegal use of the database."
Hen said only the party itself is allowed to use the membership information.
"From now on, email will be sent in a coordinated fashion by the party," he said. "Candidates interested in doing so should send the party a link to a website or other electronic format that will be attached to the message the party will send out to its members in coordinated fashion in the names of all the candidates, about once a week."
Individual candidates will be allowed to send emails to voters only if they have agreed in writing to receive such messages.
Candidates who violate these regulations could be forced to pay a fine or, in more extreme cases, be barred from running, Hen said.