Fact Sheet 6: Communicating Effectively


Though difficult, discussing racial issues in mixed settings is crucial to challenging negative narratives propagated against communities of color. Instead of focusing on racial deficits, appeal to our shared humanity—emphasizing that safety net programs are work supports that make it easier for individuals to bounce back from adversity. 

“It is extremely difficult for anyone to get up and make it to work every day on an empty stomach if they slept on the street or a crowded shelter the night before, or if they are suffering with an untreated chronic illness.”


  • One of the biggest challenges for social policy advocates is presenting their work and making the case for change before unfamiliar or hostile audiences. However, avoiding discussions about race only sustains prevailing myths about communities of color.
  • Social policy advocates can change the narratives about communities of color by thoughtfully considering race and ethnicity in their use of data and analysis of policy impact. Conveying history can support a more tolerant, diverse, and inclusive society by generating understanding of the diversity of human experience across time and place.