issue statement

An issue statement begins and frames an IPA.

All IPAs should begin with at least one issue statement (more is okay) that achieves the following:
  • explains the significance - who is affected and how.
  • defines the term. - explains what this issue is and links to other relevant policy terms
  • frames the debate by introducing sub issues and related issues.

All of this should be done in 150 words or less. Openpolitics.ca is not an excyclopedia, and does not support article length discussions on issues, except as an issue breifing which is a separate page.

More about issue statements.

keep them as neutral as possible

The issue statement presents the issue as concisely as possible, from as neutral point of view as current debates seem to require. This hopefully creates the foundation for positions and arguments that remain stable for a long time to be worth debate by edit.

Don't presume "the problem"

Issue statements should avoid explicitly stating "the problem", leave this to the position statements.

Avoid using words like should, as, because, could, must, need, etc.

Keep imagery out of such a statement.

anchors a briefing

Issue statements differ from issue briefings only in depth and degree of detail - the latter include many contrasting positions to help clarify the dialectic or "can of worms" that the issue statement opens.

An interest group briefing by contrast includes those positions on MANY issues that are common to that one interest group. This will require many unrelated issue statements to be quoted so reliance on their existing wording is critical. To reframe an issue simply to appeal to that interest group may be to pander to them.

Issue statements introduce an IPA or a briefing or section of a briefing, only. They are intended not to provoke in themselves but only to anchor the briefing.

Use policy terms

Editors should ensure that issue statements use policy terms as much as possible, and link to related issues and any relevant issue briefings and interest group briefings. As many as possible usually.

No one who is not deeply familiar with the entire list of policy terms should be trying to write an issue statement.

related pages: list of policy terms, types of pages