Campaigners – Get Political
So you are informed and familiar with the issues around urban pesticide use- that’s great! Now to start campaigning…
Start a petition demanding that your local council goes pesticide-free and begin collecting signatures. Some councils will have a facility on their website where local people can start a petition, or you can use one of the many online petition sites available such as Change.org. You can also choose to do a paper petition instead of an online one, or even as an addition for local residents who don’t have the internet.
Elections are a great time to get commitments from prospective councillors. Check to see if there is a council (or mayoral) election coming up in your area and try to get the candidates to pledge to go pesticide-free on all council land if elected.
To attract more concerned citizens to the campaign, try organising a public meeting or raising the issue at already existing meetings of like-minded people (e.g. local environmental groups). You might also reach out to local businesses to see if they might help promote your campaign.
Write letters to your local media, run street stalls, talk to your neighbours, friends and colleagues about your concerns.
Print off our leaflets and posters and put them up in local shops, libraries and anywhere else you can think of.
If there is an area that you know is pesticide-free, such as a local park, allotment or even your own garden, you could put up one of our ‘Pesticide- Free Zone’ signs to raise awareness around the issue.
You may want to target particular councillors, either those you know might be allies, those who represent the ward you live in or perhaps those who hold a relevant portfolio such as Head of the Environment Committee. Every council is structured differently, so do some research on how yours works and consider reaching out to potential allies directly. You could write them a letter, email and/or ask for a meeting to discuss the issue.
Instead of treating councillors as targets, try working with them as allies and presenting the journey towards going pesticide-free as a joint mission which you want to help them with.