Earlier this month, we told you that Clear Channel in Wichita, KS, had pulled ads for a local women’s clinic for violating “decency standards.” In response, women’s rights group Women, Action, & The Media (WAM) teamed up with the South Wind Women’s Center to create the #ChangeTheChannel campaign in order to insist that women’s health care is never indecent, and that everyone has the right to know where they can get medical care.
Since the launch of the effort, many thousands of citizens in Wichita and across the country phoned, emailed and tweeted the Wichita Clear Channel office and Clear Channel’s corporate representatives, calling on the company to run the ads. Around 70,000 people signed petitions to the same effect.
In response to the national public outcry, Clear Channel officials met with representatives from the clinic on August 7, and promised to reconsider the ban on its ads. Then, yesterday, after a month-and-a-half of national pressure, Clear Channel officially reversed its decision to keep the ads off the air, and agreed to run them.
In light of Clear Channel’s decision, Jaclyn Friedman, Executive Director of WAM!, told PRNewser’s Elizabeth Mitchell via email:
We’re absolutely thrilled at the success of the campaign, and we’re honored to have had the opportunity to work with and in service of the brave staff of South Wind Women’s Center, who do heroic work every day. In the bigger picture, we believe that this action taken together with our successful #FBrape campaign prove that citizens genuinely can hold media companies accountable for the ways they represent and serve women. We don’t have to tolerate media injustice. We just have to organize. And we plan to keep doing exactly that.