Address separate audiences separately
An important part of writing for your audience is addressing separate audiences separately. Many documents and websites address more than one audience. Mixing material intended for different audiences may confuse readers. By addressing different audiences in the same place, you make it harder for each audience to find the material that applies to them. In regulations, this may make it difficult for each audience to comply with your agency’s requirements.
The following example shows a regulation (40 CFR 745) that treats each regulated group separately in its own subpart, rather than mixing all the groups together. For an example of a rule that does not address separate groups separately, see 5 CFR 1320.
Title 40: Protection of Environment
Chapter I: Environmental Protection Agency
Part 745: Lead-Based Paint Poisoning Prevention In Certain Residential Structures
Subpart E: Residential Property Renovation
Firms renovating structures
|745.84||Confidential business information.|
|745.85||Information distribution requirements.|
Subpart F: Disclosure Of Known Lead-Based Paint And/Or Lead-Based Paint Hazards Upon Sale Or Lease Of Residential Property
|745.107||Disclosure requirements for sellers and lessors.|
|745.110||Opportunity to conduct an evaluation.|
|745.113||Certification and acknowledgment of disclosure.|
Subpart L: Lead-Based Paint Activities
|745.225||Accreditation of training programs: target housing and child-occupied facilities.|
|745.226||Certification of individuals and firms engaged in lead-based paint activities: target housing and child-occupied facilities.|
|745.227||Work practice standards for conducting lead-based paint activities: target housing and child-occupied facilities.|
|745.228||Accreditation of training programs: public and commercial buildings, bridges and superstructures.|
Subpart Q: State And Indian Tribal Programs
States and Tribes
|745.324||Authorization of State or Tribal programs.|
|745.325||Lead-based paint activities: State and Tribal program requirements.|
|745.326||Pre-renovation notification: State and Tribal program requirements.|
|745.327||State or Indian Tribal lead-based paint compliance and enforcement programs.|
- Murawski, Thomas A., Writing Readable Regulations, 1999, Carolina Academic Press Durham, NC, p. 4.
- Redish, Janice C., How to Write Regulations and Other Legal Documents in Clear English, 1991, American Institutes for Research, Washington, DC, p. 17.