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  • Doug Smith

'No soliciting' information


As an elected official, I strongly believe that being available to residents an essential part of being a good representative. To me, walking in neighborhoods and knocking on doors is a sure way to meet people and let residents know that I am available.

Some residents post a “no solicitation” sign near the front door. Unfortunately, there is sometimes confusion about what door-to-door activities the ‘no solicitation’ sign applies. These signs only apply to individuals and companies soliciting for business or exchange of money. Political candidates are exempt from these laws federally and locally. Below are citations for your reference.

In some cases, I encounter residents who do not wish to be bothered by anyone. In those cases, the resident typically posts a sign that says, “No Soliciting. No Political Candidates. No Religious Group. Etc. Etc.” Even though that kind of sign is not legally-binding, it clarifies the resident’s intent. Individuals like me respect those wishes and do not knock on the door.

I encourage all residents to be civically and politically involved. However, if you would prefer not to have candidates knock on your door, please consider posting a sign that informs candidates as such.

Citations

Worthington’s codified ordinance 713.02 defines solicitation and the requirements of any person or business soliciting a financial transaction. Not considered soliciting: Religious organizations and political campaigns that are providing information only, and are not soliciting donations.

According to the First Amendment and a 2002 Supreme Court decision, soliciting and campaigning are different things. The Supreme Court found that the U.S. Constitution protects the rights of missionaries, politicians and activists to knock on your door and offer to tell you what they believe or why you should vote for them or care about their cause.


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