The term ‘purdah’ has come into popular use across central and local government to describe the period of time immediately before elections or referendums when specific restrictions on communications activity are in place. The terms ‘pre-election period’ and 'heightened sensitivity’ are also used.
It is important to note that pre-election rules restrict activity wider than just publicity. Use of council facilities and resources; the member’s code of conduct, developing new policies and holding of events - including some meetings - featuring elected officials should all be carefully considered during a period of heightened sensitivity.
This Local Government Association guidance provides advice on the publicity restrictions that should be observed during the purdah period.
The purdah period starts in Arun District on 18 March 2019.