Billboards for drug sniffing dogs, cheap lawyers, gun shows, pay cash for your house.
These are just a few of the messages often found on billboards in low-income census tracks with high-levels of health disparity. This is the case for Smoketown, Louisville’s oldest African-American neighborhood, where our team at IDEAS xLab has been working for over four years.
Since April 2017, we have replaced 20+ billboards in Louisville's Smoketown neighborhood through our HEAL Community Approach with designs featuring community member photographs and quotes.
Poet and IDEAS xLab Cultural Strategist Hannah Drake and I worked with community members to create the campaigns, which launched during national poetry month. We have been able to partner with the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness to produce two additional campaigns.
Our goal, through One Poem At A Time, is to help people envision what implementing a policy that restricts predatory advertising in communities that are in the process of reviving and rebuilding could look like.