Public sector news in brief

BBC Janie Ironside Wood, the BBC News head of comms, has been confirmed in her post under a revised staff structure. The broadcaster is axing one in four jobs in its communications, audience and marketing division as part of a wider reform programme (PRWeek, 1 July).

GCA More than 50 per cent of delegates at this week's Good Communication Awards believed councils lacked clarity in communicating what they stood for. Attendees were asked why a quarter of the population rated councils as the worst bodies at delivering information. Some blamed councils' lack of clarity, while others cited insufficient investment in comms and marketing.

CIPR The next CIPR Local Government Group meeting will take place on 3 February 2006 in Canary Wharf. Topics for discussion will include the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, with talks
featuring representatives from the five host boroughs. The keynote speaker will be Lewisham mayor Steve Bullock.

TOURISM VisitBritain has asked the Royal Mint to put images of tourist attractions, including the London Eye and Stonehenge, on coins. The mint is managing a competition in which the public and businesses have been invited to submit designs for all denomiations of 50p and below. It is not yet known when the winners will be announced.

SOCIAL CARE Torbay Council has launched a campaign to address abuse of the elderly, raising awareness of the issue through local media, with the strapline 'abuse doesn't just happen to children'. In the towns Torbay, Brixham and Paignton, 22 per cent of residents are aged over 65, compared with 16 per cent nationally.

ENVIRONMENT Norfolk County Council has appointed Steve Downes  as communications officer for planning, transport and the environment, and Caroline Mackinson as communications officer for waste and recycling. Downes was previously a  journalist on the Eastern Daily Press, while Mackinson co-ordinated waste awareness for Suffolk County Council and the Anglia region.

SIGN UP TO PRWEEK'S PUBLIC SECTOR BULLETIN at emails for exclusive weekly comment from industry experts. This week, Mori Social Research Institute director Ben Page argues that politicians should make fewer official announcements.

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