News in brief

SALFORD: Salford Council and a local primary care trust have launched a city-wide citizens’ panel called The Big Listening to help shape the city’s future.

The 1,000-strong panel will have an influence on decisions in areas such as the provision of services. A market research firm will be hired to set up the panel.

LANCASHIRE: Schoolchildren from 36 schools in Lancashire are being encouraged to get friends and families to make firm commitments to recycle as part of an eight-week initiative called Recycle for Schools. Launched by BBC children’s presenter Dominic Wood, the campaign, by Pendle Borough Council, aims to use ‘pester power’ to encourage residents to sign up to pledges outlined in booklets.

NEWHAM: Tabloid-model-turned-TV-celebrity Melinda Messenger has been drafted in by Newham Council in London to promote a fostering and adoption campaign. Messenger, who has three children and is looking to adopt more, took part in a photoshoot last week.

LONDON: The capital’s promotional body, VisitLondon, has forged a new partnership with the UK arm of The International Special Events Society (ISES). ISES members are all specialists from the live events industry and include venues, exhibition organisers, caterers and florists. The partnership aims to promote London’s event industry and contribute to winning more London bids for major events such as the MTV Awards ceremony, which last year took place in Edinburgh. The US-based membership organisation is made up of 3,800 companies worldwide.

EVENT: Trade Body LGComms is helping council PROs to prepare for the Freedom of Information Act with a one-off event on 26 November. The event at The Corus Hotel, Warwick, will feature a speaker from the Information Commissioner’s Office and workshop sessions, which are intended to guide councils on how to prepare for the act coming into force in January.

WHITEHALL: The Department for Constitutional Affairs is bidding to improve its online comms with the public. The department, which is responsible for the court service and advises on human rights and freedom of information policy, has hired IconZest to help develop its web and intranet comms. The DCA wants to promote its image and work in a more simple, direct way to internal and external audiences.

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