Occupying the *habitat loss* on the sidewalk in front of a business is a superb way to encourage the business to stop selling or promoting an environmentally unethical product.
Business practices that might be unethical include selling very polluting, unsustainable products, giving out un-needed plastic bags, selling bottled water or not donating 1% of their income to environmental organizations. Twinkling the business Up or Down goes great with this Direct Action
Use Occupy ecofx to empower individuals and groups who are going to occupy the sidewalk in front of specific environmentally or socially irresponsible businesses.
Before occupying, first ask the business to stop taking a specific earth killing action. Ask them to sign a promise to do so. The agreement does not have to be typed or fancy. An agreement that is handwritten on the back of an old flyer is fine.
If the manager or business owner says yes, then have them sign their pledge and your copy of the agreement that states that they will stop taking the stated environmentally bad action. Then celebrate with them for a moment and recite a nice poem and/or thankyou message and/or give them a gift. (A gift such as a blue painted rock or a lime to symbolize the earth, or an XOEarth Award that can be printed for free at XOEarth.org/honors.)
Once they have said yes, go outside and joyfully occupy in front of the business to celebrate their agreement for promising to take the stated action. Dance around the perimeter of an area representing the approximate area of habitat that the agreement will help protect (or a smaller area that represents a multiple thereof). If possible, take a picture of the signed agreement and email it to your contacts. Then show the signed paper to passersby and invite them to celebrate the victory.
If the manager or owner of the business says they will not agree to the requests, but say they will consider the request. Then say, “ok, so will you please sign that you and your business’s management will consider this request?” If they say yes, then write these words on the bottom of the statement. “This is only a statement of request. This manager (or owner) agrees that this business will consider this request(s).”
Stride around an area representing the approximate area of habitat that the future agreement will help protect (or a smaller area that represents a multiple thereof). If possible, take a picture of the signed agreement to consider, and email it to your contacts. Then show the signed paper to passersby and invite them to cheer on the victory.
If a business says they will NOT stop taking the action that hurts our planet and the people, and will NOT sign an agreement to consider the request, THEN (while in front of the owner/ manager) on the bottom of the agreement write, on this day “date here” owner (or manager) “their name here” has refused to sign this request to consider. Signed, “your name here”.
Then tell them that you must occupy the area of habitat loss potential on the sidewalk in front of the business (or a smaller area that represents a multiple thereof). Walk and stomp around an area representing the approximate area of habitat that the future agreement would have helped protect (or a smaller area that represents a multiple thereof). If possible, take a picture of the un-signed agreement, and email it to your contacts. Then show the un-signed paper to passersby and invite them to stomp with you.
Stepping off (walking around) the perimeter of the area of habitat lost because of a choice the business can make this occupy action more effective.
Plus, below are some other ideas, a song and resources to power up your ecofx sidewalk occupy.
Occupy ecofx /by stele tyombe lorne feather bubbles
I occupy here to change your mind,
for the benefit of all the life (humankind, tree kind, ocean kind,)
((using styrofoam, using plastic bags, selling bottled water )) is a shame
Stop it now, help save the day,
For all the life that loves to live,
for all the fish that love to swim,
for all the kids that want to play
for all the lovers that want to kiss
for all the moose that want to bugle
for all the owls that like to fly
As an option to a sign, a green and/or blue clothe or flag with the appropriate words and/or the planet drawn on it held up in the air, or a sign are good. Small quarter page flyers about your action to give to passersby and customers are good.
XOEarth Honors has a bunch of rad ideas for how to use your talents or an XOEarth Award to honor businesses once they have taken the ethical eco action you have asked them to take. Offering the reward to the business when making a request is a respectful way to encourage them to make the change.
The thankyou does not have to be a big thing. It could be a song, a poem, a drawing, an apple or a signed XOEarth Award that you can print at XOEarth.org/honors, a cartwheel or thousands of other cool things.
Whether or not we are occupying it is also cool to wear something that shows we are taking environmental actions in our own lives. One way to do that is to put on the XO (X drawn with a dot as a human, and an O drawn as the earth) on clothing, backpacks, personal items and skin as a tattoo (temporary or not). The XO drawn this way could become a universal symbol of environmental commitment.
Again, it does not have to be the XO. Other words and symbols that show others we are happy to take actions for the planet are great too. More occupy at XOEarth.org.
Occupy actions on the sidewalk in front of a business may last for days. However, Occupy actions that only last an hour or more can make a difference. And again, even though big groups are great, individual Occupy actions are crucial as well.
Tell others about your Occupy actions via email, sharing and XOEarth facebook.