Plain Writing Act

The Plain Writing Act of 2010 requires federal agencies to write "clear Government communication that the public can understand and use." President Obama also emphasized the importance of establishing "a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration" in his January 21, 2009, Memorandum on Transparency and Open Government.

The USITC is committed to writing new documents in plain language by October 2011, using the Federal Plain Language Guidelines.

We need your help to comply with this law. Let us know if you have trouble understanding our documents or the pages on our website, or give us suggestions for making them clearer, by writing to us at:

We have assigned two staff members to oversee our plain language efforts:

  • Jim Kennedy, USITC designated senior official for plain writing
  • Peg Hausman, USITC contact for plain writing

We’re training our employees and have strengthened our oversight process. We must use plain language in any document that:

  • is necessary for obtaining any federal government benefit or service or filing taxes;
  • provides information about any federal government benefit or service; or
  • explains to the public how to comply with a requirement that the federal government administers or enforces.

This is the annual report (PDF) on our progress and compliance with the Plain Writing Act.