One fun and easy way to reach out to the public is by tabling. This means going out to a Farmer’s Market or other community event where there is steady foot traffic and asking people if they would like to sign a health care postcard.
It is a good idea to do a little research and find out who is the point person for the event ahead of time and let them know what you’d like to do. Unless you have permission from the operator or manager of the market, you won’t be able to just set up your own table. Maybe see if there is space for you to have a table in the market or a designated free speech area. If not, it’s usually okay to have clipboards and circulate outside of the entrances.
You will want to alert the person in charge and let them know what you’re doing. People appreciate this and it is important to build positive community relationships with the individuals hosting the event.
However, if you are at a large scale rally or demonstration, it may be difficult to identify the organizers ahead of time or even at the event. In this case, it’s usually okay to just do your thing. As long as you are not restricting the flow of a public sidewalk or street traffic, it is usually fine to set up a small table. You can also use the clipboards and circulate through the crowds.
- “Would you like to send a health care postcard to the Governor to support health care for all Californians”?
- “Sign a postcard to support Universal health care”?
- “Do you support Health care for all minus the insurance companies”?
Whatever you decide to say, make it your own, be comfortable. Generally, a passer-by will choose right away if they want to talk and/or sign a card. We find that it is not useful and can be frustrating to engage with a person who adamantly disagrees with you. You are not going to change his/her mind. Instead, it is more useful to spend your time pursuing other potential supporters.
Most important, HAVE FUN! Bring a friend, make an afternoon of it, stay and get a bite to eat together afterward. Interacting with people is invigorating; after a few hours of talking to folks, you will feel better and energized to know that there are a lot more supporters out there then you might have thought.
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If you live in the L.A. Area, contact Lisa: lisasinglepayernownet (lisasinglepayernownet) or call (323) 316‑8933.
If you are in the Bay Area, contact Don: dbechlervaluenet (dbechlervaluenet) or call (415) 695‑7891.