Clear Language

Use of Clear Language (also known as Plain Language) can help you ensure the majority of readers are able to fully understand your message. For many people (42% of Canadian Adults), low levels of literacy may keep them from fully participating in society. Clear Language for all public communication in Burnaby is endorsed by the Burnaby Inter Agency Council (BIAC).
Clear language is an approach to communication that;
– Puts the reader first
– Focuses on action

Why use Clear Language?

Clear language means no one is excluded. It is fair, open and inclusive and can reach people who don’t read well.
A clear language document lets people;
– Find what they need to know
– Understand what they find

How does clear language help?

– Saves time, money, and resources, because it gets the job done the first time
– Reaches people who don’t read well
– Helps all readers understand information
– Avoids misunderstandings and errors
– Act on what they find out

What does Clear Language look like?

It usually consists of;
– Short sentences with one point
– Simple graphics that are easy to understand
– Uses headings, sub-headings and bullets
– Some bold type to highlight important points
– Essential information with lots of white space

Further Sources

A Plain English Handbook
What is Clear Language?
Clear Language Design Guide
Clear Language Dictionary
Clear Language Checklist
Clarity Kit 1
Clarity Kit 2
Clarity Kit 3
Do your members know their contract?
Clear language and design for union communicators
Clear Language Screen
Checklist for Plain Language
B.C. Government Plain Language Guide