Author: Phil Wilmot

Creating a rapid response system that leverages repression for your cause

Insights

Editor: Staff and supporters of Solidarity Uganda were jailed in multiple incidents in late-2017. Here, Phil Wilmot shares how Solidarity Uganda prepared to respond to attacks by government authorities, protect their team and turn potential disaster into an advantage.  Rapid response can protect victims of political persecution and build movement power. More important than money and tech is a checklist and a small group of motivated individuals. Prepare for any situation: Know allies, raise money now, delegate leadership. As I write this, a warmongering dictator’s police are searching through this particular village, hunting me for something I posted on...

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Three ways a Kenyan union used social media in campaign against government

Campaigning, Case Studies

A Kenyan doctors union used social media to create public empathy and give supporters greater control over campaign messaging that would typically be filtered through government-friendly media. After being called greedy, doctors union reached for moral high ground by aligning with popular rhetoric and interests. Leaders shared humanising stories, photos and video of doctors–stories easily shared on social media. Make the campaign about issues that impact everyone, not just striking doctors. The Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Doctors Union (KMPDU) had little public support when it began its 5,000-member strike on December 5, 2016. The government opposing union demands had...

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How organisers are using radio and shared values in Uganda

Case Studies, Insights

People across the Uganda’s Lango region are reaching one another using radio to mobilise strikes. Farmers and small businesspeople of the Lango tribe in northern Uganda went on strike November 18 and 19, 2016, to protest what they see as unfair outside control of the local economy. Calls to action over radio were essential to paralysing business in Lira town and the surrounding districts. Amelia Kyambadde, Minister of Trade, rushed to the scene to address the demands of the entrepreneurs who comprise a higher percentage of the population than any other country. Local businesspeople were frustrated by three decades...

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What it means when victims lead (and why it matters)

Insights

The power of many movements is derived from placing leadership in the hands of those victimized by injustices they aim to end. The City for All movement based in Budapest has become a global voice on homelessness. City for All is led by homeless Hungarians, direct victims of economic and social injustice, while NGOs and other allies focus on support roles. In the U.S., Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) organizes and mobilizes white people to support racial justice actions led by people of color. “We have to get out of these offices.” Locals had no will to wait...

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