Advocating an End to the Death Penalty
Resource type: News
Stanford Social Innovation Review | [ View Original Source (opens in new window) ]
The Atlantic Philanthropies and its network of partners are using advocacy and communications to end capital punishment in the United States once and for all.
By Annmarie Benedict & Eric Brown
The use of the death penalty in the United States is arguably one of the country’s most controversial political issues. The United States stands practically alone among democracies that use capital punishment. From 2007-2012, it trailed only China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq in the number of its citizens that it put to death.
In 2006, as follow-up to its previous work to abolish the death penalty for juveniles, The Atlantic Philanthropies joined with a number of other funders and grantees, and developed a comprehensive strategy to abolish the death penalty completely. Effective advocacy communications anchored the strategy, and the work appears to be paying off. A recent independent evaluation by researchers Michael Quinn Patton and Kay Sherwood found that the campaign contributed to the momentum toward abolition.