For those working in the social justice space, the increased ideological polarization of policy-making bodies isn’t a new phenomenon. Unfortunately, the brazen threats to communities’ and individuals’ rights has become more commonplace. As emotions stirred in two subsequent election seasons, Mixte worked hand in hand with Sojourners to fight voter suppression and intimidation in 10 battleground states.
2020 and 2022
During our 2020 and 2022 election work, Mixte rolled out a media relations plan to amplify Sojourners’ poll chaplain initiative, which sought to de-escalate tensions at polling places. We amplified Sojourner’s messaging and key talking points, acted as a liaison between social justice faith leaders and media, and provided real-time, on-the-ground stories to journalists in precincts where tensions flared up.
But our work together didn’t end there. Sojourners raises critical questions about faith, belief and culture. One such question? How do faith-based communities heal when their leaders violate their trust?
In early 2023, several members of the once beloved L’Arche community bravely came forward about abuse they had experienced at the hands of the community’s founder. Jenna Barnett, a reporter at Sojourners, sought to tell their story through the Lead Us Not podcast.
What Lead Us Not, a five-episode series, sought to explore was not simply the bad deeds committed by L’Arche’s founder and former leader but, instead, how the L’Arche community wrestled with the aftermath and found a way forward in healing, together.
We joined Sojourners in raising awareness of the Lead Us Not podcast through outreach to select media, social media toolkits and social media advertising.
2020 and 2022
We leveraged media coverage in 10 key states to call attention to Sojourner’s effort to bring peace to the polls, securing over 3 placements in outlets such as CNN and the New Yorker. Across the U.S., poll chaplains and others provided a peaceful presence around the polling locations most at risk of voter disenfranchisement and encouraged free, fair, and safe elections in order to turn out the Black vote.
We helped Sojourners spread the word about Lead Us Not, leading to appearances on shows like “Cult Vault” and “IndoctriNation.” Critical conversations were raised across social media among listeners of the podcast about how communities can move forward following shared trauma and how we, collectively, can protect and honor survivors.