The Progressive Communicators Network exists to strengthen and amplify the power, voices, and vision of grassroots movements that are working for racial, social, economic, and environmental justice. Network members use communication strategy, framing and messaging, and media tools to: 1) enhance the influence of social change movements on public policy and opinion; and 2) realize a world without poverty, racism, and other forms of oppression. The Network is a project of Spirit in Action, a movement-building support organization located in western Massachusetts.
Connecting and sustaining progressive communicators. Progressive communicators often experience a sense of isolation. Through national gatherings, regional organizing, and listservs, the Network creates spaces and mechanisms for communicators to ask for help, share resources, access web resources, and engage in peer-to-peer learning. This makes them more effective in meeting the needs and advancing the political goals and visions of progressive organizations and campaigns.
Cultivating collaboration between communicators, grassroots organizations, and structures and leadership arising from communities of struggle. Collaboration is a key ingredient of building effective, creative, and powerful movements for broad-based social change. The Network provides on-going support for collaboration in the form of administrative/staff support and Network resources.
Advancing the field of strategic communications. While progressives are increasingly interested in communication, there is often a lack of understanding of the complexity of this work, and how to use different aspects of communication to support change making. The Network seeks to raise understanding of and support for strategic communication as a critical and underresourced part of effective communication change work.
At the heart of PCN’s work are deep personal and political relationships based on trust, integrity, and accountability that bridge identities, communities, organizations, issues, movements and ideologies. To this end, PCN is committed to bringing together an ever expanding diversity of participants- constantly reflecting on the composition of the group and seeking out new communicators to participate. We also seek to develop resources that are accessible and useful to grassroots organizing base-building efforts. We will measure our success by our relevance and our demographics.
We understand that every individual is unique, that the aspects and combinations of diversity are infinite and that individuals are not reducible to demographics. However, it is important that we name the aspects of diversity we see as relevant to building a broad based movement for justice. Our current list of diversity criteria include, but are not limited to:
We use this list of diversity criteria to set benchmarks for different areas of work. The PCN Leadership Council and national gatherings must be made up of a majority of People of Color, for example.