Flag Follies at Cilly Hall

2/14/2014 12:29:00 PM

I can excuse many things when it comes to politicians and I have never been one to judge people on their “recreational activities”. However last week’s flag follies at City Hall were ridiculous.

The flag debate erupted last Friday, when the mayor found out that a rainbow-coloured flag had replaced a City of Toronto flag on a courtesy flagpole used to display the flags and banners of a range of organizations. Councilors started to chime in - some in support and others on what they thought should take its place.

Here are a few WRONG things I heard and saw:
  • Let’s fly the Canadian flag in its place
    • The ceremonial courtesy flagpole never flies the Canadian Flag. The Pride flag replaced a City of Toronto flag that normally flies on the city’s courtesy flagpole when a specific flag, requested by non-profit or charitable organizations for example, is not up on that flagpole. In fact, there are several Canadian flags prominently displayed in Nathan Phillips Square
  • Let’s fly it along with the Canadian flag
    • Wrong - the National flag should always be flown on its own mast - it is improper to fly two or more flags on the same flag post
  • Let’s fly the Olympic Flag
    • Wrong – the Olympic brand is the Fort Knox of licensing - you need permission from the IOC (International Olympic Committee)
  • Let’s hang a Canadian flag in the window of the mayor’s office
    • This frat house maneuver just didn’t work mainly because it was not displayed correctly. It should have be suspended vertically with the stem on the right when viewing it from the street I love this shot from the National Post Good thing the mayor and councilors don’t have the “power” when it comes to flying flags – Protocol at City Hall is strong and holding firm to preserve the dignity our national flag deserves.
I love this shot from the National Post

Go Canada Go
Lucky for us here in Canada, we have been seeing quite a bit of our flag at the Winter Olympics. So what better time for event planners everywhere to review some flag etiquette and keep our flag flying with pride.

Here is the best link for protocol rules for the Canadian flag: http://www.pch.gc.ca/eng/1359048153800/1359048247377

Check out this site for Olympic branding rules: http://www.olympic.org/licensing