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Police Reform: A podcast from Brave New Words

Advocates in Washington state, confronting one of the most permissive standards for justifiable use of deadly force in the country, brought police reform to the ballot and won. This episode of Brave New Words explore the strategies behind their unorthodox coalition and how leaning into race, in defiance of conventional wisdom, proved pivotal to persuasion and mobilization.

Learn how the De-Escalate Washington coalition convinced voters of the need to hold officers to account for fatally shooting the unarmed while similar efforts in other – even very progressive – places have failed to garner majorities or even make it to the ballot.

The podcast also explores how the coalition spoke openly about race, centered those most affected by police violence, and inoculated against the all-too-predictable scare tactics of their opposition.

Brave New Words takes listeners on a journey around the globe with renowned communications researcher and campaign advisor Anat Shenker-Osorio as she unpacks real-world narrative shifts that led to real-world victories. From electing the dynamic Jacinda Ardern Prime Minister of New Zealand, to repealing a national ban on abortion in Ireland, to beating back right-wing race baiting in Minnesota, Anat and her guests explore what made it possible to engage the base, persuade the middle, send the naysayers packing, and win.

Learn more, listen and subscribe at BraveNewWordsPod.com.


Resource Metadata


  • Creating Narrative
  • Deploying Narrative


  • Case Study


Produced by

  • Brave New Words

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