It’s been a decade since PRSA set up its Advocacy Advisory Board in response to a member survey. The board is charged with helping to advance the profession by being PRSA’s consistent voice on key issues. One of the most recent issues has been PRSA’s actions to urge the U.S. Senate not to restrict government use of PR firms. Two U.S. senators are conducting an investigation into the government’s use of PR and advertising contracts. PRSA’s concern is that the investigation will “disregard” the central value of public relations to the federal government.
In a letter to Roll Call, PRSA Chair and CEO Gerard F. Corbett, APR, Fellow PRSA, stated: “Whether educating the public about government services, providing information on public health and safety, explaining the tax code, attracting businesses to an economic enterprise zone, or any of dozens of other areas, governments have a clear role in communicating effectively and efficiently to the public.”
We have no problem with investigating potential flaws in contracting procedures. But it is critical that PR not be characterized as a whole-scale misuse of funding.
You can read more on the PRSA website, including the letter from PRSA to the Senate Subcommittee on Contracting Oversight and the Roll Call op ed.
You can also listen to an interview with Gerry Corbet conducted by Shel Holtz.