As a leader responsible for implementing community prevention initiatives, you can harness the power of the media to make the case for community prevention. Our colleagues at Berkeley Media Studies Group frequently remind us to ask ourselves: if the only understanding that decision makers (and the public) had about community prevention was formed by the media, what would the public and decision makers know? What wouldn’t they know?
By paying attention and responding to media coverage through letters to the editor or online comments, you can offer your own experiences and successes as counterpoints to common misperceptions about community prevention. When you proactively share your community prevention efforts with the media—through writing op-eds or pitching stories to reporters—you are directly building an understanding of community that deflects negative criticism. Actively engaging with media to broadcast and elevate your local efforts builds increased understanding of what prevention is, shares local successes, and demonstrates the value of bringing these efforts to scale.
The following pages provide a compilation of tips and talking points for making the case for community prevention. They are based on Prevention Institute’s daily analysis of how the media is (and isn’t) framing community prevention. Using this information, you can expand and shift the frame of how the media depicts community prevention, to ensure that the whole picture is shown and that community prevention is framed accurately and comprehensively. We encourage you to contact Andrea Buffa <Andrea@preventioninstitute.org>, Communications Manager, or Sarah Mittermaier, Communications Coordinator, for assistance in planning your media advocacy activities, from pitching a story to a reporter to crafting a compelling op-ed.
Community Prevention Talking Points
Browse our tailored talking points to guide your conversation on community prevention.
Read through our talking points or browse by category...
Communicating with the Media: How to Elevate Your Successes
Community prevention works: it builds healthier communities, saves money and supports equity. Here are our suggestions for capturing and reflecting the full impact of your community prevention efforts:
Letter to the Editor: Examples
Writing a letter to the editor? Read our examples to get inspired and help guide your thinking.
Tips for Op-Eds and Letters to the Editor
The editorial pages of the newspaper are consistently read by decision-makers; they provide a pulse on the public's stance on key issues of concern. This makes them a key venue for advocates working to reach policymakers and the public. Here are our suggestions for successful letters to the editor and op-eds:
Browse through our recently published Op-eds:
Community Prevention Sample Op-Ed
Read our sample Op-Ed in support of community prevention to help guide your own.