Pollution and toxic lead
It’s not easy to decide which specific advocacy opportunities will make the best use of your time and money today. It’s even more challenging to choose the one or two campaigns that will also provide the best platforms to elevate and energize your issues over a longer time horizon. With a focus on community health and environmental justice, EarthJustice’s Healthy Communities team is responsible for a particularly large, diverse portfolio of cases spanning clean air, clean water, and pesticides and toxic chemicals. EJ needed a partner to build smart advocacy communication plans, messaging guidance and tactical recommendations for environmental priorities to keep everyone – leadership, attorneys, campaigners, media staff, and partners – on message and on target. That’s where Spitfire came in.
In defense of the environment and environmental laws, Earthjustice works on hundreds of legal cases and across more than 90 issue areas. The team knew it would need help to make informed choices about where to deploy its finite resources for maximum impact over the next two to three years.
We got smart on the issues, got to know the players, and assessed the landscape. Then we facilitated a carefully constructed priority-setting session at Earthjustice in which they debated the relative merits of each possible campaign opportunity. In the end, lawyers, communication staff, and policy experts agreed on two campaigns to pursue: addressing pollution from freight and curbing exposure to toxic lead. We then sat down with each team of legal and policy specialists to identify strategic must-dos, shaped unifying narratives, and zeroed in on target audiences and measurable objectives for each campaign.
We worked with the teams to help unify their diverse work under a common narrative and create actionable, practical communication plans to follow through on those decisions over the course of the next two years. Our partners at Earthjustice reported that the process of making tough decisions about communication priorities had made building new communications-conscious conversations internally and is providing a common foundation of strategic collaboration among lawyers and campaign staff.