Safe and Effective Protesting Guide

Clean and Prosperous America

Safe and Effective Protesting Guide

Safe protesting: 

Step 1: Go with a buddy or a small group, make sure everyone has everyone else’s contact information, and make a plan for where to meet up if you get separated. Have someone be your emergency contact (ideally someone who is local and not attending the protest) and write their phone number on your body in permanent marker.

Step 2: Come prepared with the right supplies and clothing. Go over these general protest preparation checklists from Amnesty International and Protect the Results and read through the advice in this article from Wired.

Step 3: Be prepared to encounter violent tactics used by police, including tear gas, pepper spray, flashbangs, rubber bullets, batons, sound cannons, and others.

Digital and personal privacy:

Step 1: Cover any distinguishing personal features and plan ahead to protect your data and information from law enforcement or doxxing. See this guide and this guide to learn how.

Step 2: Use the Signal app so that your messages will be protected with end-to-end encryption.

Dealing with police: 

Step 1: Know your rights as a protester or organizer. Your state’s ACLU will have additional information specific to your state.

Step 2: Know what to do if you are arrested or questioned, and have a lawyer’s phone number ready in advance. Many National Lawyers Guild chapters operate Legal Support Hotlines. Write the hotline number or your lawyer’s number on your body in permanent marker.

Step 3: If you or others are arrested, your local community bail fund may be able to help.

Dealing with militias or disruptive elements: 

Step 1: Read this guide for suggestions on identifying and filming disruptive elements and learn the laws around unauthorized private militias in your state.

Step 2: Find out ahead of time who is managing security at your event and be prepared to contact them if necessary.

Step 3: Be prepared to engage in dialogue and de-escalate when appropriate: use your best judgment and always put safety first. Coordinate with your buddies and be ready to leave if the situation becomes unsafe.