Turn up the heat

Most targets are going to need a real push, and at some point it may be appropriate to escalate the campaign. Here are some ideas and help.


Overview The basics of divestment campaigns Step 1 Pick a Target & Build a Team Step 2 Start a Petition & Plan your Campaign Step 3 Get Active & Build Power Step 4 Engage your Decision Makers
Step 5 Turn up the Heat Step 6 Stay Connected Step 7 Win! Resources Tips, Guides, Factsheets and more Divestment Arguments Reasons to Divest

Turn up the heat

Divestment may not come easily, and at certain points you may need to escalate your campaign to put the heat on decision makers. Direct action tactics have been used effectively at campuses across the world, particularly during events like Harvard Heat Week, and the escalation at Edinburgh University that prompted a decision U-turn.

The Ruckus Society has some great resources and ideas for actions, and the tactic star in their action strategy guide is useful.

Knowing your legal rights may be  important, and Green and Black Cross are an incredible source of legal support for grassroots activists in the UK.

Action development checklist


Things to remember:

When planning an action (after you’ve nailed the publicity to get people there) there are some roles it’s good to have filled on the day:

  • Scouts – to go ahead and report back on the situation before you start.
  • Media – a spokesperson ready to speak to the press, and someone ‘off site’ who can send out a press release straight away once it’s happened and forward on media enquiries.
  • Social media – people both there and ‘off site’ sending updates from the action and getting them out far and wide.
  • Documentation – people taking photos and videos, and being ready to get them uploaded and set out fast if needed.
  • Public engagement – people making sure the public know what the action is about and handing out flyers or information.
  • Welcomer!  – actions are a great place to recruit people for your group. Make sure you’ve got sign-up sheets and collect the details of people involved.
  • Security/police liaison – someone to talk to any security presence about what’s going on and reassure them it’s ok. Be as vague as you can, and don’t give away personal information.
  • Staff liaison – if workers are being disrupted in any way, having someone to explain to them what’s going on and reassure them they are perfectly safe and not the target of the protest is important.
  • ‘Vibes’ watcher – someone making sure that everyone is ok and the mood stays high!
  • Legal observers – to watch out for your legal rights, if you need them!

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