Day of Empathy 2019

March 5 #DayofEmpathy Aims to Spark Justice Reform

March 4, 2019

The first step in truly fixing our justice system is to humanize and empathize with those who are impacted by it – both crime survivors and those who have committed crimes.

That’s the spark behind the March 5, 2019 National #DayofEmpathy, a day of action created by #Cut50, a nonprofit national initiative that works to reduce the prison population while making communities safer. The 2019 Day of Empathy aims to pass the microphone to Americans impacted by the criminal justice system and give them a platform to tell their stories.

“Without empathy, we cannot achieve meaningful policy changes that keep our communities safe, our families whole, and our economy strong” – #Cut50

While empathy alone may not bring immediate, tangible change for those who have had contact with the criminal justice system, it’s an important beginning in building bridges across communities who are unevenly impacted by the justice system.

Throughout the day, local organizations across the country will host events with conversations about the system, featuring speakers and participants who have been directly affected. Many events include visits to state capitols and Governors’ offices, and meetings to bring together elected officials and “Ambassadors of Empathy” —people who have had contact with the criminal justice system—to inspire and share first-hand experiences of the consequences and impact on real lives.

#DayofEmpathy will feature storytelling both in person and using digital media and virtual reality to help humanize people who have had contact with the system.


Get Involved in the Day of Empathy

You can find local events for #DayofEmpathy happening on March 5 and take the pledge to choose empathy and take action on the campaign website, and by following the hashtag on social media.


Elly Belle is SparkAction’s content & engagement strategist and a writer with a passion for youth empowerment, advocacy, culture and media. Elly is most passionate about youth development, reproductive health, mental health, advocacy for the LGBTQIA community, immigration, and advocacy for sexual assault survivors—and she's written about all of it and more for outlets like Bust and Teen Vogue, where she's a regular contributor. More from Elly here.