In response to news reports associated with the termination of an FDA spokesperson and public relations consultant related to misinformation addressing convalescent plasma therapy, T. Garland Stansell, APR, PRSA’s 2020 Chair, issued the following statement:
“PRSA’s Code of Ethics, which serves as the guiding principle for professional communicators, advocates for the free flow of accurate, honest and truthful information. All organizations, from government agencies to corporate environments and nonprofit entities, should be committed to protecting truth as a core value essential to serving the public interest and contributing to informed decision making as part of a democratic society.
Those responsible for communicating on an organization’s behalf must speak truth to power, adhering to the highest ethical standards to maintain the integrity of relationships with the media, government officials and the public. Honest and accurate communications is critical, as is prompt action to correct erroneous communications without fear of reprisal, retaliation or punitive actions.
PRSA believes that those who adhere to the highest standard should be commended for safeguarding and delivering critical public information, carrying out their ethical responsibilities. Those not following best ethical practices must be held accountable for their actions.”