How to Talk About Refugees: Don’t

How to Talk About Refugees: Don’t

Ayelet Hines No Comment

Planing to talk about refugees? Framing in terms of refugees is like framing in terms of climate change—if you’re sympathetic already then you don’t need convincing and if you aren’t sympathetic, those words don’t resonate. Immediate harm to children should be the message of choice (and is the truth). Only mention refugees so people know what executive order to oppose. The tobacco control movement figured this out. For years their message was about old people getting sick and dying from tobacco. Not so many people cared about that. But once they had data showing that addiction starts in childhood, they could say it was a pediatric disease, and more people cared when they perceived the immediate harm to children—the disease they could develop today (also the truth). The American Academy of Pediatrics and #6 of the Women’s Refugee Commission are the best messages on refugees that I’ve seen so far.

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Ayelet Hines - Change University

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