This is a guest post by Jason Briefel.
Over the past few years, media and politicians have called into question the effectiveness and even the necessity of local, county, state and federal government programs and the employees who carry them out. What is often lost in these stories is the actual services provided by cities and localities to citizens every day – services that people rely on, and that would not happen without the corps of dedicated local public employees.
While city agencies and services should share stories about the work they do on a regular basis, there is a Congressionally-dedicated week each year that seeks to put focus on the important work government at all levels provides and to put a face to the people who work for government. That week is Public Service Recognition Week (PSRW), which is celebrated the first full week of May each year.
Started in the early 1980s to combat anti-government rhetoric and continuing since then as a time to recognize the services being provided by dedicated workers at the city, county, state and federal levels, PSRW is a time to share these stories broadly.
This year, PSRW will be held May 3-9. The theme of PSRW 2015 is “Government Works.” Government agencies and employees, as well as public officials, are encouraged to share stories of how government works for citizens and the type of work that government employees do on a daily basis. A variety of guides for celebration, toolkits for teachers, social media activities, events and other PSRW initiatives can be found on the PSRW website.
The following is a brief list of initiatives that you are encouraged to join and share with others.
• PSRW Thunderclap: Sign up for the PSRW 2015 Thunderclap campaign where a few hundred supporters can spread a message of thanks to millions of social media followers.
• Public Service White Board: Join our white board photo campaign on Facebook and Instagram to proclaim “I love public servants because…” or “I’m proud to serve because….”
• Faces of Government: Help us share positive stories of how government works by contributing profiles about government employees and their work and accomplishments.
• Like us on Facebook (Public Employees Roundtable), follow us on Twitter (@PERoundtable) and Instagram (PERoundtable) and join the conversation using #PSRW.
PSRW is coordinated by the Public Employees Roundtable (PER), a coalition of government employee and other good government organizations. PER is always in the lookout for stories to share throughout the year about government working for citizens and encourages you to reach out and share those stories with PER. PER also welcomes the feedback from any local government organizations as well on ways to make PSRW stronger each year.
Government services at any level do not work without good people to provide them. PSRW is a time to remember that, learn more about government and say thank you to public employees. Please join us in 2015.
About the Author: Jason Briefel is Director of Government Affairs at Shaw Bransford & Roth, P.C., where he represents the Senior Executives Association (SEA), a founding member of the Public Employees Roundtable (PER), among other clients.