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Tourism stakeholders partake in crisis communications workshop

St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): Tourism stakeholders including the media and the police were last week part of a workshop on crisis communication, conducted by PR firm Adams International that represents St. Kitts in North America. Candace Kimmel, President of Adams International said the purpose of the workshop is to review the basic tenets of crisis communication and the remind people why we have crisis communication.  “That is to protect St. Kitts, to protect the brand, to protect our reputation in the world,” Ms. Kimmel said. “We all as individuals care so much about our country but sometimes we seem to be at loggerheads with each other, maybe trip over our own feet on how best to do that while at the same time do our jobs,” she added. 

Regarding on how the media should cover incidents that could affect the tourism image of the country without being seen as a PR messenger, Ms. Kimmel noted the media should just report the facts without using incendiary language. “I think the media just simply reports the facts and only the facts,” Kimmel said. “In the emotion of the moment it’s easy to use incendiary language. It easy to use language that can be misinterpreted…does it have to be described as a disaster or a violent crime. Can it be called an incident until we know was it a crime, was it a murder, was its self inflicted. I think that’s we ask of the media; not to whitewash the facts.” 

Ms. Kimmel was pleased with the interaction among workshop participants which included police PRO Inspector Lyndon David, other members of the Royal St. Christopher Police Force, members of the media, representative of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority (SKTA) including officials from the SKTA Toronto, Washington and UK offices, a representative from the Nevis Information Service, the St. Christopher Air and Seaports Authority (SCASPA) and the St. Kitts and Nevis Fire and Rescue Services. 

Hear interview with Candace Kimmel

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Comments  

0 #1 Samuel X Charles 2013-11-25 15:20
If Ms. Kimmel is naive enough to think that the media are going to report "just the facts" in the heat of a crisis, I'd suggest she doesn't know much about how news is gathered or reported, or about crisis communication. In today's world, "news" consists of rumor, speculation, opinion, supposition, presumption and an occasional fact -- all presented by anybody with Internet access and an axe to grind. You might as well get used to it -- and a good PR firm would be telling you how to deal with it. If you think the media are going to wait hours while you gather your thoughts and develop a spiffy statement, think again. They are probably going to start "reporting" on your crisis before some of you know that it is happening. And the first to report plants seeds for the rest of the coverage and for the formation of public opinion, and it is extremely difficult to change those once they are floating out there on the Internet.
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