Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s PR team left no stone unturned to protect the royal couple’s image after they exited the royal family in 2020.
Before the Duke and Duchess of Sussex visited one of New York’s poorest schools, Public School 123, in 2021, the couple sent the school an email and suggested them to ‘run it by their lawyers,’ per The Sun.
The school was allegedly asked to sign a clause which banned anyone, including children as young as five, to not make a negative comment about the visit.
The visit happened just a few days after the infamous Oprah Winfrey interview aired and was also featured in their Netflix docuseries, Harry & Meghan.
Three days before the visit, which was led by Toya Holness of Sussexes’ PR team, emailed the Department of Education with the “appearance release”, which included the gagging clause.
NYC schools press secretary Danielle Filson reportedly emailed back asking for the best way to have the clause agreed to. However, it is unclear if the clause was actually signed.
Per The Mirror, the clause was sent just so that there was no mention of Meghan’s children’s book, The Bench, and that they “just wanted to make it a bit less promotion-ey.”
During the visit, the former Suits actress was dressed in a maroon pant suit and wore around $6000 worth of Cartier jewellery to reach out the book to children, who mostly belonged to underprivileged households.
While the sources at Archewell revealed at the time that this was standard practice, the gag notice reflects the lengths the Sussex aides went to protect the couple’s image.