One Day Without Us (1DWU) was a national day of action held in February 2017 to highlight the contribution of migrants living and working in the UK. It was organised by Matt Carr and a group of other volunteer activists from outside the migration sector. IMiX contacted the organisers and offered its services as a press office for hire.
1DWU accepted the offer of help. IMiX came on board to provide communications advice and hands on media relations support in partnership with the 1DWU team.
Coincidentally, a major Stop Trump demonstration emerged well into the planning process, scheduled for the same day as 1DWU. There was some worry that 1DWU would be overshadowed as a result. IMiX took on the task of managing the relationship with the Stop Trump coalition to avoid that. IMiX also helped to build bridges with the migrant sector and secure support from key organisations.
1DWU received a wide range of media coverage across print, online and broadcast both in the run-up to the day and on the day itself. Highlights included:
- Coverage in the Guardian, the Evening Standard, the New Statesman, the HuffPost and others.
- Owen Jones using his Guardian column to encourage people to support the day.
- National broadcast coverage.
The Stop Trump demonstration was, as expected, the larger event but did not overshadow 1DWU in media terms. Instead, it provided an extra, higher-profile platform through which to promote it.
A range of sector players got behind 1DWU and supported it publicly.
How we did it
Early on, IMiX worked with 1DWU to develop a messaging framework, drawing on previous research about effective migration communications. We then worked with spokespeople to ensure that all 1DWU’s public communications chimed with its narrative. We encouraged a focus on celebrating migrants’ contribution and imagining a country without them.
IMiX built links between the Stop Trump coalition and 1DWU to counteract the danger of the former overshadowing the latter. That relationship resulted in Owen Jones, a lead organiser in the Stop Trump movement, using his column in the Guardian to encourage people to support 1DWU.
IMiX also provided a range of drafting and media liaison support. We drafted press releases and op-eds, briefed spokespeople on lines to take, and sold in spokespeople to broadcasters.
IMiX and 1DWU are working together again on 2018’s 1DWU.