- Sample Press Release Form
- General guidelines and media tips
- Media Report Back Form
WHEELS OF JUSTICE TOUR BRINGS OCCUPATION OF IRAQ AND PALESTINE TO (NAME OF TOWN)
Bus Tour Brings Eyewitnesses from Iraq and Palestine
Date FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: (Local Coord. Name & Phone ##)
Wheels of Justice Bus, 773-505-1870
(City and Date of Release)-- On (date and time) at (location), (group/s names) hosts the Wheels of Justice Tour. Rolling in to town on a full-size, brightly-decorated school bus, the tour brings first had witness accounts from Iraq and Palestine to challenge and educate Americans the repercussions of war and occupation both on people abroad and Americans at home.
The tour travels on a converted school bus that doubles as a mobile billboard and peace center. In the past three years the bus has traveled more than fifty thousand miles to more than four hundred locations all over the United States.
Having seen and lived with war, terror and occupation in Iraq and Palestine, participants in the Wheels of Justice offer first-hand experience irrespective of partisan politics. Building upon the growing domestic and International movement against the war and occupation in both Iraq and Palestine, the Wheels of Justice Tour provides education, outreach, nonviolence/action training, active resistance, and community-building all across the United States. For details on the tour, visit www.justicewheels.org.
Locally, the tour ....(Paragraph here for local info: Speakers, city schedule, local angle etc)
“As witnesses to war and terror, we advocate justice and human rights as the only real roadmap for peace at home and abroad,” states _________ of _________(or other quotation). “We call upon all parties involved to recognize and adhere to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and we call for nonviolent resistance to this violence of war, terror and occupation.”
The tour is sponsored by Voices in the Wilderness (www.nonviolence.org/vitw/), the Palestine
Right to Return Coalition (www.Al-Awda.org), and the Middle East Children's Alliance (www.mecaforpeace.org/) with support from affiliates of the International Solidarity Movement.
This tour is endorsed and hosted by a number of organizations; the first 7 month leg of this nationwide tour began in mid-August 2003.
Speaking to activists can be important in rallying them to the cause and is not merely "preaching to the choir". However, a primary reason for a tour is to effect public opinion and gain new supporters. For this publicity and media work are paramount. Here are some guidelines.
1. First, speak with your group about media coverage and the functions of the tour. Before you even invite the tour, you could speak about what you want this tour to accomplish locally in the context of its mission nationally. Ask members to think of whether they want news coverage. Discuss the pros and cons of getting the tour's message before the entire community versus having only the people who will attend their presentation hear their message.
2. If you have a choice of cities, some will afford more chances for national media coverage than others. If media coverage is a priority you might want to focus on a few cities that have syndicated outlets in that city.
3. If you decide arranging news coverage is a priority you will need good bios on the speaker and sample press release (provided).
4. When you determine the cities the speaking tour will visit in your area and the best venues, identify local media contact people and have them contact us (the tour organizers) for additional media coordination. We maybe able to provide local press contacts.
5. Most of us are volunteers. But there are sources of info on media work you can use to train yourself.
Visit these media resources for help:
6. Familiarize yourself with your media terrain. Who is who in your area. Build names and contact information lists of editors and journalists. Build a fax list for sending out press releases.
7. Send out press releases very early to medi that might do pre-event publicity. For the event itself, make sure you send your press release two weeks in advance and then 2 days before the event. Call the next day to make sure they received it and will be there. Have others call independently with the same information (e.g. saying "I heard about thsi event, I am going and I do not know if you guys will be there but it looks like something newsworthy).
8. Use this opportunity to build relationships with the media. Think of it as a long term project. You need to become a credible resource to your local media. So stick to the facts and be friendly and helpful. Use the shabby journalism you see as an opportunity to educate them to do better in the future.
9. At the event, ensure journalists/reporters are provided adequate information and that they interview key people. Journalists will likely be talking to anyone at your event. However, giving your activists some tips and educating them can help ensure a uniform message. Also designating spokespeople and handing out press kits can help ensure the message is not distorted. This can be tricky and requires careful planning and preparation among all activists. The media team should act as a source to the journalists and to activists.
10. Make sure you fill out and mail/email the "media report back form" (enclosed) no later than one week after the events ends in your area.
Report Back Form
Wheels of justice Tour
This is not a typical speaking tour. We are making a commitment to get a message out about oppression and colonization to the entire community (total population) in each city where this tour visits. In addition we are working on arranging national media coverage to reach beyond the cities they will be visiting.
To accomplish this, you need to place a high priority on arranging news coverage of your speaking engagements in addition to arranging media interviews.
Please fill out the form below. It will impact on future funding for speaking tours in addition to helping us prepare a final report. Please print or type information.
It is important to have some sense of the media coverage you were able to arrange. This report will help us in evaluating how we are doing on affecting public opinion. Please fill out this form and mail it or email to:
PO Box 1172
Orange, CT 06477-7172
City where event took place:_____________________
Description of event:_____________________________________________________________
Date of event:___________
Number of people attending:_______________________
Number of articles in religious newspapers:
Please send photocopies of articles or at least links.
Number of news interviews on network stations:
Number of TV talk show interviews on network stations:
Number of news interviews on network stations:
Number of radio talk show interviews on network stations:
Name of person filling out form:_______________________
Note: We realize you will need a number of these forms. Please copy. Also, feel free to call for any
assistance you need to arrange media coverage.