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Dear Abby Spreads Word on GSA's Free Publications

Millions of citizens receive official government information

GSA# 10635

September 25, 2009
Contact: Tobi Edler, (202) 501-1231
tobi.edler@gsa.gov

WASHINGTON — Millions of citizens rely on the U.S. General Services Administration as a source of vital government information available free through GSA’s Federal Citizen Information Center (FCIC) in Pueblo, Colorado. For years, the “Dear Abby” column has guided millions of Americans to information on topics such as staying healthy, saving money, and being a smart consumer.

In the month of May alone, “Dear Abby” fans ordered more then 1 million publications as a result of her column highlighting topics such as heart disease, stroke, cholesterol, depression, and diabetes. And over the past 5 years, Dear Abby fans have ordered more than 5 million government publications from FCIC.

GSA thanked “Dear Abby” author Jeanne Phillips Wednesday for promoting the vital government information available through the Federal Citizen Information Center, which has been a trusted one-stop source for government information for more than 40 years. 

“When the public is informed about the resources available to them by their government, they become engaged and empowered,” said GSA Acting Administrator Paul Prouty during Phillips’ visit to GSA Headquarters. “‘Dear Abby’ has helped citizens by guiding them to free publications provided by GSA. Our Office of Citizen Services is committed to giving Americans easy access to government information by web, by phone, and by print. Basically in whatever format best meets their needs.”

“Dear Abby” is one of the most widely syndicated newspaper columns in the world, appearing in 1,400 newspapers worldwide with a daily readership of 110 million, according to uExpress.com, a web-based source for advice and opinion columns. Phillips, daughter of the original “Dear Abby” columnist who wrote under the pen name Abigail Van Buren, has been a longtime proponent of the free government publications available from FCIC.

The Federal Citizen Information Center is a part of GSA’s Office of Citizen Services. In addition to print publications, GSA offers helpful government information to the public through a variety of channels. These include USA.gov and GobiernoUSA.gov, its Spanish language counterpart. GSA also responds to questions from the public via email, web chat, and toll-free phone at 1-800-FED-INFO (333-4636) and educates citizens through email alerts and the U.S. government blog, GovGab.gov.

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GSA provides a centralized delivery system of products and services to the federal government, leveraging its enormous buying power to get the best value for taxpayers.

  • Founded in 1949, GSA manages more than one-fourth of the government’s total procurement dollars and influences the management of $500 billion in federal assets, including 8,600 government-owned or leased buildings and 213,000 vehicles. 
  • GSA helps preserve our past and define our future, as a steward of more than 480 historic properties, and as manager of USA.gov, the official portal to federal government information and services.
  • GSA’s mission to provide superior workplaces, expert technology solutions, acquisition services, purchasing and E-Gov travel solutions and management policies, at best value, allows federal agencies to focus on their core missions.

Did You Know? Over the past year, GSA’s Office of Citizen Services has had more than 240 million touch points with the public, providing government information across a wide variety of channels.