Art as Effecter of Public Policy

Three years ago, the Texas legislature was considering reducing the allowable rehabilitation period for patients suffering from traumatic brain injury. A worker in the field conceived of the idea of commissioning highly detailed photographic portraits of survivors of TBI, collecting the stories of the patients and their caregivers, and mounting a week-by-week campaign to send the photos to members of the legislature.

Funding was preserved. The photographs and the personal stories affected the legislators in ways words alone never could.

Now the Brain Injury Association of America is working on a nationwide campaign that we hope ultimately will result in broader exposure and then increased empathy for these individuals who have been injured in combat, in sports, through a momentary lapse of judgment, or through violence. Ultimately we hope to ensure that they have the support they need to lead the most productive lives they can.