Policy Profile: Philadelphia, PA Sweetened Drink Tax

What Worked in Philly

Each community has unique circumstances that dictate how it will frame and design its campaign. Here are some lessons learned from Philadelphia:

  • Tie the tax to tangible, measurable initiatives that the public and council members want, and for which government can be held accountable; health benefits will follow.
  • Focus on local priorities. These taxes can be an effective and popular solution to address local budget challenges and provide revenue for priority projects.
  • Maintain a communications strategy that creates an ongoing buzz of earned and social media to inform the community and bolster support for the tax.
  • Build a strong and diverse coalition. Include partners focused on health impacts, as well as civic, labor, and faith organizations, small businesses, and those who support specific initiatives that will be funded with the new revenue.


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