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Public Affairs Office offers tips to address reporters

By | June 20, 2011

SPECIAL TO THE POST

Army personnel and their Families may be contacted by media. You are visible in the community, and because of your military connection, lead an interesting life. Media may become especially interested in your story during deployments and redeployments. We encourage you to share your story. If you are contacted, here are some helpful tips.

HELPFUL TIPS

• If you are on post, a public affairs representative must be with the media.

• If you are off post, know with whom you are speaking. Before answering questions, write down the reporter's name, phone number and the name of his or her news organization.

• Understand that it is not harassment when the media calls you at home or stops you at the supermarket to ask for an interview. Only when they persist, after having been told "no," does it become harassment. If you feel harassed at any time, contact the Public Affairs Office.

• You don't have to do an interview, and it is your right to stop an interview at any point.

• If you choose to speak, remember there is no such thing as "off the record" comments. Never lie to media.

• Don't speculate. There is nothing wrong with saying, "I don't know" in response to questions to which you have no answer.

• Always consider operations security. Keep sensitive information like redeployment dates or specific locations to yourself.

REMEMBER

• Contact the PAO before talking with media.

• If you or your Families are contacted by a news organization, you have a right to say "no."

• Internal privileged command information for personal and Family planning like deployment information is not for public discussion or news media release.

• Don't say something you don't want to see in print the next day.

• The Public Affairs Office is eager to help you share your stories. Call us.

Always remember: When in doubt, call the Public Affairs Office for advice on how to proceed.

PUBLIC AFFAIRS CONTACTS

1st Inf. Div.: 785-240-6359 or 785-307-0641

1st ABCT: 785-240-4458

2nd ABCT: 785-239-1470

4th IBCT: 785-239-0568

1st Sust. Bde.: 785-240-0765

CAB: 785-239-1670

Garrison: 785-239-3358, 785-239-2022, or 785-210-8867

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