Consumer body restructures PR

The Consumers’ Association is believed to be in the process of restructuring its PR function in a bid to strengthen its campaigning role and is understood to have asked six of the seven-strong media relations team to leave the organisation.

The Consumers’ Association is believed to be in the process of

restructuring its PR function in a bid to strengthen its campaigning

role and is understood to have asked six of the seven-strong media

relations team to leave the organisation.



They are expected to be replaced with a new set of staff, all reporting

to current head of PR Nicola Holgate. These include: two media relations

managers, two officers devoted to promoting the association’s campaigns

and two to Which? magazine, the association’s flagship title, and its

other publications.



The association’s communications department is split into three

divisions: PR, public affairs and the policy unit. Until last November,

the department was headed by Steve Harris, who left to become the

director of communications for the UK Offshore Operators’ Association.

Harris’ post has not been filled.



Holgate confirmed: ’We are changing things and are in the middle of

confidential consultation with our unions.’ However, she declined to

comment any further.



Sheila McKechnie, director of the association since 1995, has made no

secret of her desire to make the association as powerful to consumers as

the Confederation of British Industry is to industrialists. She aims to

promote the association as a more aggressive campaigning organisation

tackling specific consumer issues at a Government level and contributing

to national debates in the media.



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