How To Stay Safe While Protesting

How To Stay Safe While Protesting

How To Stay Safe While Protesting

NYC Democratic representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez shares necessary precautions in preparing to stay safe while protesting.

NYC Democratic representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez shares necessary precautions in preparing to stay safe while protesting.

Text: Dylan Kelly

New York City’s Democratic representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) took to Instagram yesterday to share an insightful infographic with vital precautions for protesting safely, both in terms of protection amid the COVID-19 pandemic and defense against legal repercussions. 

AOC heavily advises that protesters wear face masks and eye protection in addition to undistinguished clothing that can hide any identifiable markers like tattoos and blend in with the crowd. She recommends tying up long hair, wearing heat-resistant gloves, and writing down emergency contacts on your arm. Bring water for both drinking and possible relief from tear gas, earplugs, cash, your ID, bandages and first aid supplies. 

In addition, AOC informs protesters to leave any items you wouldn’t want to be arrested with at home and emphasizes the necessity of taking a friend with you. In regards to phone safety, disable Face and Touch ID, make sure airplane mode is turned on, and disable your cellular data (to ensure that your device will not be transmitting any data while you’re protesting and so that law enforcement cannot make you unlock your phone against your will). 

Take a look at the full infographic below. 

View this post on Instagram

BE SAFE. Here’s our guide on being prepared for safe protests. PLEASE READ ⬇️ . 1. LOOK OUT FOR THINGS THAT DON’T SEEM RIGHT. There are increasing reports and investigations that white supremacists may be infiltrating these protests, breaking windows and destroying property. If anything seems off to you, DOCUMENT IT. Always check who is organizing. . 2. FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS OF GRASSROOTS BLACK ORGANIZERS. They have been at this a long time and are disciplined in the ropes of community organizing and demonstration. It IS a discipline. Follow trusted leaders whose goal has been the focused pursuit of justice. If they just showed up, that’s a red flag. . 3. HAVE A BUDDY. Make sure someone is keeping an eye on you and check in on them. . 4. STAY SAFE and take care of each other. 💜

A post shared by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@aoc) on

In addition to the graphic, AOC shared a fervid speech on the importance of taking action and continuing to speak up against all causes of unrest. 

“If you’re out here calling for the end of unrest, then you better be calling for health care as a human right, you better be calling for accountability in our policing, you better be supporting community review boards, you better be supporting the end of housing discrimination…Because if you don’t call for those things and you’re asking for the end of unrest, all you’re asking for is the continuation of quiet oppression,” says AOC. 

“This is not to condone violence, this is not to condone any of that. But…we have to really ask ourselves the question as to why so many people were okay ignoring these problems until a window got broken. Why does it take that for people to pay attention?”

Watch for yourself, below.

Credits: Photo: Stephen Maturen

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