We all know that lawyers aren’t known for their messaging and simple communication style. And sometimes the lawyers know that, too. This is why Earthjustice, the premier nonprofit public interest environmental law organization in the U.S., called on Mixte Communications to help it translate its deep research on lead policy work into approachable, understandable materials to help community advocates across the country protect families from leading poisoning. Interns worked on a long research project about lead poisoning in cities across the United States. Once they had the results, they realized that it was very data-heavy, wordy and written in a language that only scientists and lawyers could understand.
Launch one user-friendly website that shares information and makes it easy to download the resources. Develop e-mailable PDFs that could be shared through traditional advocacy channels
Here’s how we did it:
- Our work started with combing through the research to seek the most important bits of information. We worked closely with the legal team to ensure we translated the legal data into “normal people talk” and to create a digestible format with a step-by-step guide for users to follow from start to finish that empowers them to either improve lead policies in their community or get their first lead policy approved.
The final product included checklists and images that more accurately reflected the communities they were trying to reach. We made sure to keep the perfect balance of simplifying the information for everyone while maintaining the scientific integrity of the data. This way, the findings were accessible but still credible and accurate. We met our objectives to produce both a simple 10-page PDF and a 5-page website for the Better Lead Policy initiative that Earthjustice shared with its partners. Unfortunately, we won’t know for years if the materials actually helped change policies, since creating or changing policies like this often takes 2 – 5 years (and sometimes even longer), but introducing an interactive platform that makes important environmental justice information more accessible is definitely a start.