What to bring to a protest?
Black Lives Matter protests all over the country are beautiful and nothing like I’d ever thought I’d see in my lifetime!
What an incredible and unprecedented national movement with people all across the globe coming together to stand up against systemic racism and cultural bias against Black people in America.
From aerial views, these protests are a colorful mix of thousands and thousands of people! All shades of color protesting together all over the country and organizing for one common cause.
The cause is long-overdue— 400 years late, still demanding the same justice without racial prejudice.
I never imagined that I’d be with my own kids who are now young adults— fighting for the same equal rights that my parents were fighting for some 50 years ago in their generation. Time flies, but it seems change hasn’t moved so swiftly.
A national movement speaks through protests
Protests are showing no signs of letting up anytime soon. So I thought it’d be a lighter lift for everyone to share an easy guide on what to take and what to leave behind.
Whether your demonstration is near or far, there are many moving parts involved with participation. Everything you’ll need on the lists below will fit snugly into your favorite backpack.
We have our work cut out for us— so let’s get to it!
Stay safe, my friends!
“Every man of humane convictions must decide on the protest that best suits his convictions, but we must all protest.” —Martin Luther King, Jr.
What to wear to a protest
1. Bring your protest sign. It’s your voice, your message and an extension of who you are.
2. Wear comfortable shoes that are durable for marching, moving fast or running.
3. Write your emergency contact’s name and phone number on your body. Preferably on an arm where it’s seen easily in case of an emergency.
4. Arrive with your hair pulled back or bring a hair tie.
5. Unfortunately, we have witnessed cases of tear gas and pepper spray. Come prepared with goggles or glasses.
6. Wear solid and nondescriptive clothing, unless you’re trying to stand out in the crowd.
7. Bring gloves.
8. And don’t forget your face mask!
What to bring to a protest
1. Water for drinking and in the event of tear gas.
2. Cash and your photo ID.
3. Earplugs for noise sensitivity in crowds and loud crowd control efforts.
4. Band aids and a first aid kit for minor accidents.
5. A wash cloth and maybe a few napkins for anything you need to wipe down, including your face in hot climates.
6. Snacks, especially if you’re anticipating an all-day event.
7. Hand sanitizer and wet wipes are a necessity.
8. If it’s summertime and you’re protesting in the day, make sure you have bug spray and sunscreen.
9. Bring a store-size plastic bag to hold trash separately in your backpack.
10. And, yes— bring a backpack to hands-free hold everything!
What *not* to bring to a protest
1. Bring your cell phone but turn off face ID or Touch ID. In an emergency, a stranger may need to use your phone to call for help or to identify you.
2. Leave your jewelry at home. Rubber wedding bands are excellent for events like this.
3. Wear your glasses and leave your contact lenses behind.
4. And don’t bring any items that you wouldn’t want to have with you if arrested.
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