Skype video chat with Katie Parrish of Oceana
During the meeting we had a Skype video chat with Katie Parrish of Oceana to talk about the petition. She went over the procedure and gave us tips that she has picked up from her own experiences.
She also emailed Mary Kate some fact sheets that we should probably carry while getting signatures. These will probably come in handy when informing people about our cause. The most helpful will probably be the Fact Vs. Myth sheet, which talks about jobs, gas prices, and foreign oil. Facts like: “renewable energy creates 3 times more jobs than gas production” will be rousing and help to get signatures.
Katie went over the procedure for petitioning:
- · Draw people in.
Have signs and posters that help to explain what is going on
Be welcoming and smile, even give a little wave
- · Let them know that this is short, easy, and that you’re NOT collecting money.
Ask questions like: “Do you have a minute for the environment?” , “Do you have a minute to take a photo petition?’, or “Do you have a minute for wind power?
- · Be happy and cheerful.
You are going to be a stranger to them, so be one that smiles.
- · Keep what you say short and informative.
Have fact sheets and practice what you will say.
- · The waiver is all one sheet. Make sure you take it back. This has especially been forgotten when people take the photo petitions.
- · The bare minimum of information you need to get is their name and address. An email address or a phone number can be useful if they would like to be available in the future if Oceana needs supporters.
- · When doing the picture petitions:
Make sure you take back their signed petition
Have them use a large permanent marker to write their names so it can be seen easily in the picture
- · Thank them!!! And have them leave with a smile and a wave!
She also shared some tips that she has found very helpful:
- · Don’t waste time with arguers. There will be some people who will debate with you all day long and though that is not a bad thing, signatures and getting the message out to the maximum number of people is the priority.
- · Use this as a way to gain more group members. People who would be interested in the petition might be interested in joining the Planeteers, so always keep an eye out for them.
- · Have them take the picture while holding the turbine. It is cool and fun and might help people get over being camera shy.
- · We need a goal. It will get us motivated and help us gain more signatures. There will be a goal set for the whole group, but also set a goal for yourself.
- · Put yourself in their shoes. If a stranger walked up to you and wanted you to sign this petition, would you want them to be smiling, nice, polite, and clear? Yes! Remember that and treat the people with respect, even if you get a few bad apples.
- · Also, if we have to be the randomly awesome strangers who are working to make the world a better place, let’s be proud of it and show how awesome we are!
Questions and topics that are usually asked or pointed out:
- · Why a picture petition?
Taking the picture is not necessary. It is perfect fine to just sign the form. The pictures are useful because when the representative sees the faces, the conversation becomes more real and less political. It is simply a more effective and more personal way to get the message across.
- · Does it affect the upcoming election?
Oceana is a non-partisan organization. Therefore, they do not have a side. When asked this make sure you state that they are neutral and don’t have a position. We are out here because the president should be looking into this, whoever it will be.
- · Some people think that the wind turbines are ugly… Well, is that uglier than an oil rig? It may not seem very pretty but it is for a good cause.
Also, remember that Ohio is an important political state. What we are interested in and care about matters.
Katie emailed fact sheets that Mary Kate will be sending out to everyone via email. We will already have some printed out the day of. If you can, bring a camera or a clip board.
Mock Oil Spill
At the meeting we also discussed having a mock oil spill. More news about that will be announced in the future.