The Media for a Just Society Awards are the only national recognition of media whose work furthers public understanding of adult justice, juvenile justice, child welfare, and adult protection issues. We seek stories that illustrate current realities or the promise of reform, especially those that help people understand the complex issues surrounding the nation’s social systems.

Categories include book, film, journalism, media by a person who is incarcerated, podcast/radio, television/video, and youth media. Past winners include author Nell Bernstein (Burning Down the House: The End of Juvenile Prison), filmmaker Malik Vitthal (Imperial Dreams), journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates (“The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration”), author Reginald Dwayne Betts (Bastards of the Reagan Era), filmmaker Ava DuVernay (13th), and other illustrious journalists, writers, and filmmakers.

In conjunction with the Media for a Just Society Awards, Evident Change recognizes one superior piece of media with the Distinguished Achievement Award. The recipient is chosen by a panel of guest judges.

Learn about the 2022 Media for a Just Society Awards winners here. Past winners can be found here.


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