Plain English, Please

Congress just passed a bill requiring federal agencies to use plain English in documents and publications. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if every agency followed their example?

Try your hand at it. How could you rewrite this announcement to make it shorter and simpler? When you’re finished, scroll down to compare your version to mine.

Chief Anna Brown and Assistant Chief Carl Summers have been looking for opportunities to increase community awareness of services our agency provides to the public. It has been decided to hold a one-day Citizens’ Academy on Saturday, November 14, from 9 to 4 in the Community Room. Participants will learn about the department’s policies and procedures. There is no charge. Interested citizens should preregister by calling 555-1212 or clicking the appropriate link at our website at www.SmithvillePolice.org.

Here’s my revision:

You’re invited to a free Citizens’ Academy on Saturday, November 14, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in our Community Room. Here’s your chance to learn firsthand how our agency works. Please register by calling 555-1212 or visiting www.SmithvillePolice.org.

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