Presentation slides - UF/IFAS Center for Public Issues Education

Report
Communicating about contentious critical
public issues: The case of GMO labeling
Dr. Joy Rumble and Nicole Dodds
What is the PIE Center?
• UF/IFAS Center
• State funded
• Research-based solutions for ANR issues
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Communication research
Public opinion research
Perception research
Public policy evaluation
• Outreach
Overview
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Introduction
Communicating about contentious issues
Evaluating information
Floridians’ purchasing intent for GMOs
Arguments- GMO labeling policy
Proposed legislation
Break
Case Study/Simulations
Debrief and discuss
Review/summary
Setting the stage
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Are you asked about controversial issues by your clientele?
Do you find it challenging to discuss polarizing issues?
What controversial issues do you encounter most often?
Have you been asked about GMO labeling in the
workplace by clientele?
Do you personally know what side of the GMO labeling
debate you are on?
Has anyone read HB1 or SB558 from the 2014 legislative
session?
What we are not talking about today: the science
Discussing critical issues
• Issues are complicated
• We cannot ignore them
Conversation starters
Offer you an easy way to:
• Stay up to date on current, new, or proposed
public policy
• Have quick reference materials about
contentious issues
• Incorporate public policy information and
communication strategies into conversations
Communication strategies –
Role of neutrality
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Recognize conflict as ok
Seek 1st to understand
Check your own bias
Don’t take sides
Remain calm
Be aware of non-verbal cues
Communication strategies –
Role of neutrality
• Pose questions to encourage
• Broader thinking
• Consideration of alternative
arguments
• Check with IFAS for guidance
Communication strategies –
Relaying Information
• Acknowledge science, policy,
and public opinion
• Recognize uncertainty
• Expert vs. personal opinions
• Use of language – appeals to
emotion
• Evaluating information
sources
Evaluating information sources
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Authority
Bias
Quality
Timeliness
Relevancy
Red flags
Special concerns about Internet sources
Authority
Bias
Quality
Timeliness
Relevance
Red Flags
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Spelling and typographical errors
Poor grammar
Inflammatory or emotional language or
images
Graphic styles aimed at persuading you
to accept the author’s point of view
Vague or sweeping generalizations that
are not back by evidence
Broad generalizations that overstate or
oversimplify the matter
Political, ideological, or financial goals
Internet concerns
• A, B, Q, T, R
Public opinion: About the survey
Survey conducted in late 2013:
• 510 Florida residents over
18 years.
• Data were weighted to
represent FL population
demographics.
• Perceptions and concerns
about GMOs/genetic
modification
Public opinion: Results GMO labeling
Percentage of Respondents
“I believe genetically modified food should be
labeled”
70.0%
60.0%
50.0%
40.0%
30.0%
20.0%
10.0%
0.0%
57.8%
35.3%
0.4%
1.0%
5.5%
Strongly Disagree Neither Agree Strongly
Disagree
Agree
Agree
nor
Disagree
Percentage of Respondents
Public opinion: Results GMO labeling
45%
40%
35%
30%
25%
20%
15%
10%
5%
0%
38% 39%
21%
36%
20%
18%
13%
8%
4%
Strongly
Disagree
3%
Disagree
Neither
Agree nor
Disagree
Agree
Strongly
Agree
I would purchase a food product labeled as genetically modified
I have purchased and/or consumed genetically modified food
How do issues influence policy?
• Policy problem
• A condition or situation that produces needs or
dissatisfaction among people, who then desire
government action.
• Interest groups
• Media
• Political agenda
GMO Labeling- Background
Genetically engineered food
• Food that consists of, contains or is produced
from an organism or organisms in which the
genetic material has been changed through
cell fusion or in-vitro nucleic acid techniques.
GMO Labeling- Background
Root of issue
GMO Labeling- Background
Authority
GMO Labeling- Background
Existing labeling policy
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Pose health or environmental risks
Mislead consumers
Easily assumed characteristics
Significantly different nutritional property
Includes allergens
Includes toxicant beyond acceptable limits
GMO Labeling- Background
Similar terms
GMO Labeling- Positions
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0BjuoitLVSY
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jI31JogDLjM
Based on what you know of the debate, what are
the positions for/against GMO labeling policy?
GMO Labeling: Proponent Position
• Those in favor of labeling emphasize
consumers’ right to know what is in their
food as an important attribute of a
democratic society.
GMO Labeling: Opponent Position
• Those opposed are concerned about the
increased cost of food and the logistical
challenges of labeling with no corresponding
improvement in human health or food safety.
Pro-labeling arguments
• Is supported by Floridians with 93% agreeing
or strongly agreeing
• Empowers choice
• Informs consumers
• Enables consumers to avoid GMOs
• Aligns with at least 40 other countries
• Enhances U.S. capacity to export
Anti-labeling arguments
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Voluntary labeling measures
Consumers can purchase certified organic
Consumer options could decrease
No other food production process requires labeling
It could be misleading
Labeling is not needed to identify GMOs containing
animal genes
• Food costs could rise
Proposed in Florida- HB1 and SB 558
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Provides definitions
Provides a list of commercial commodities found by the
legislature to be commonly commercially cultivated in GE
form
Requires FDACS to publish compile and publish such a list
annually
Requires mandatory labeling for GE raw agricultural
commodities & processed foods containing them
Lists exempted foods
Provides for enforcement of labeling requirements
Provides civil remedies & penalties (slight difference)
Proposed federal lawSafe and Accurate Food Labeling Act (H. R. 4432)
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Introduced April 2014
Amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act
Preempts any state or local laws
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GMOs intended for food use
Labeling requirements
Prohibit voters from proposing initiatives at the state level
Supported by GMA
Reportedly- would require food companies to submit new
GMOs to the FDA for review
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Includes ‘base products’ not processed foods (final food
products).
Break
10 minutes
Case Study- Pair Share
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10 min.
Split into pairs
Each pair will be assigned a case study
In your pair talk through the case study
Discuss the questions posed
Prepare to share your ideas with the group
Case Study- Pair Share
10 min.
• How would talking to each of these groups be
similar?
• How would talking to each of these groups be
different?
• What would be the challenges associated
with talking to each of these groups about
proposed GMO labeling?
Simulations
35 min.
• Imagine it is 2015 and GMO labeling
legislation has been proposed in the state
legislature again.
• This topic is on the minds of volunteers,
clientele, and Extension faculty alike.
Simulation directions
35 min.
• Find a new person to partner with
• Two role-play simulations
• Decide who will play the role of the Extension
Agent and who will play the role of the clientele
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For the second simulation you will switch roles
• ~5 minutes to prepare and familiarize yourself
with your role
• ~10 minutes for each simulation
Simulation discussion
15 min.
• What went well?
• What could have gone better?
• Why is it challenging to discuss contentious
issues?
• What other issues are contentious in your
county?
• How did the simulation help you think about
how you may communicate about a contentious
issue in the future?
What we talked about today
Strategies for communicating about contentious issues
Methods of evaluating information
Floridians’ purchasing intent for GMOs
Proposed legislation
Arguments for and against GMO labeling policy
Case Study/Simulations
Conversation Starters materials
Were they helpful?
What did you like?
What could be improved upon?
What topics are most pertinent to you and
conversations you might have?
Evaluation
Questions?
Contact us:
Joy Rumble – [email protected]
Nicole Dodds – [email protected]
www.piecenter.com

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