Our members are regularly contacted through our web site, word of mouth, or our Facebook page by people seeking speakers from various faiths, artists who have ideas for our involvement in their projects, and individuals or organizations who want us to participate in their program or who wish us to sponsor them. Our higher profile comes with some responsibilities on our part. To maintain a voice of integrity in South Carolina, we adopt the practice of most larger organizations, that of a formal media inquiries policy which will guide and direct all of us as these contacts and inquiries come in.
- The people of South Carolina expect Interfaith Partners of South Carolina to be a voice of integrity and moral authority, an example of how to live in a plural society. For that reason, it is vital that our organizational communications be intentional, reflecting IPSC values and agreed-upon strategies. Prior to any action or statement by you on behalf of the IPSC, which might significantly affect or obligate IPSC, please review the following policy.
- If contacted by the media, you are always free to speak your mind as an individual – this is America, and we highly prize the First Amendment guaranteeing freedom of speech. Of course, you may always be identified as a member of IPSC if you wish.
- If asked for a statement on behalf of IPSC, that is a different matter. Unless you are very sure of the group position, you are advised to refer the reporter to our IPSC Public Information Officer (currently Holli Emore). This PIO can quickly reach out to the board officers for guidance. The PIO also maintains a referral list of IPSC members for the purpose of directing reporters to appropriate individuals – whether an IPSC officer, a faith representative, or someone in that reporter’s city.
- It is possible that you may be asked to make a comment on camera as an IPSC member. Please show appropriate respect and sensitivity to our diverse membership by avoiding making such a statement while wearing clearly politically-partisan attire, campaign buttons, hats, etc.
- Any time you find yourself being interviewed by any media person, please contact the Public Information Officer immediately afterwards to tell about your experience, note any questions that may need clarification, issues which may have come up, and suggestions for future improvement for all of us. Be sure to let the PIO know which media outlet you spoke to so that we can look for a link to the story and share it out.
- If you are asked to speak at a rally or other event on behalf of IPSC, first contact the Public Information Officer with details of the request. In most cases, we are delighted to participate. However, as an IRS 501-c-3 organization there are limits to our political advocacy. As interfaith supporters, we know that we cannot presume to say what someone else believes. This is also true for many of the issues that society often finds divisive. IPSC represents a kaleidoscope of opinions and values. We must respect our own diversity, assuring that we maintain our voice of integrity and moral authority.
- IPSC is often asked to lend our name to others’ events as a sponsor or co-presenter. This entails the same concerns which have already been mentioned. Please bring such requests to the Public Information Officer, who will raise the request at a meeting of board officers and, if needed, to the full board at its next meeting. Please do not commit IPSC to any event or project without this approval. process.