News | 27 October 2022

Council proud to win Plain English award

Wellington City Council has won the People’s Choice – Best Plain Language Communication award for its 'When to put out your rubbish and recycling' section of the website.

Council rubbish bags and wheelie recycling bins at the end of a private street in Karori.

The Plain Language Awards are a celebration of clear communication and recognise those that champion it across government agencies and businesses.

The judges described the Council’s award-winning rubbish and recycling page as professional, friendly, clear and concise, and an example for other councils.

Council Website Team Lead Jane Hadaway received the award on behalf of her team.

“I’m really delighted to receive this People’s Choice Award.

“We’ve recently given the rubbish and recycling section an overhaul and continue to maintain it, making sure the language and experience is kept simple and accessible with clear messaging – which is at the heart of what we do.

“To me, that on-going maintenance and refurbishment and care over the long term, and the continuing passion behind it, is the unsexy, unsung hero of website work. So that makes me really appreciate today’s recognition.

“On behalf of the Council and the team here – thanks very much!

This is the second time Wellington City Council has won the People’s Choice for Best Plain English Communication, taking out the same prize for it’s Our Wellington brochure in 2017.

These awards also coincide with the Plain Language Bill designed to promote the use of plain language in official documents and websites. The Bill has passed its third reading and is now awaiting Royal Assent.

The movement to replace ‘gobbledygook’ in official and business documents with plain language began in Britain in the 1970s. The plain language movement now involves government agencies, businesses, corporations, consultants, voluntary organisations, and networking groups around the world.