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The squeaky wheel gets the oil

Some advice from BIEPA members Annette & Chris Schnack on writing to papers and government on issues you care about.

Strike while the iron is hot

State the article/letter or event you are referring to and identify it with name, date etc. so your reader is clear on what you are referring to. If responding to something in a paper, try and beat the deadline for the next issue.

Remember the KISS principle

Keep It Simple, Stupid. Try to focus on one major point but if there is more than one, make your most important point first. Avoid jargon, acronyms, and abbreviations, and do get your facts right. Don’t presume that the readers will know what you are talking about if you use acronyms, abbreviations etc. and do provide evidence if at all possible.

Use your name unless you have good reason not to

Unless you’re complaining about your bikie next door neighbour who is already up on an assault charge, use your own name, not a nom de plume.

Show your passion

We are in BIEPA because we care, and remember if you are going to criticize something, try and suggest a positive solution. Remember politicians turn a lot of people off by just simply criticizing and never giving an alternative.

Remember, apart from the local papers and others, we want our councillor and council, and all relevant M.P.s to be informed. Basically it is really just a case of kiss and tell – keep it simple and tell it like it is, and be as short and concise as possible.


If you want to encourage other members to act on an issue, or just want understand the issue better, or perhaps help out on a practical level: join one of our Mission Teams!

Get involved in conversations and participate in projects to amplify your impact.

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Unknown member
Oct 25, 2023

Great information Chris and Annette.

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