A Short List of Ways to Stay Safe During Protests

COVID-19 Protection

Wear A Mask to Protect from both COVID-19 and Facial Recognition.

Stay as Physically Distanced as Possible to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19.

Avoid Physical Contact and Extended Conversation with those outside your Social Distancing Circle.

General Protest Knowledge

Depending on levels of Police Presence and Escalation, be prepared for the use of “Less Lethal” Projectiles.

  1. If possible, wear a gas mask or goggles to dull the effects of Pepper Spray and Tear Gas
  2. If not possible, avoid being in the general area of Pepper Spray and Tear Gas Blasts
  3. If not possible, follow instructions on cleaning and calming of these irritants and their effects: Click Here

Do Not Wear Eye Makeup or Contact Lenses. They may worsen the effects of irritants. Bring Water for staying hydrated, but also to aid in flushing out tear gas and pepper spray blasts. Wearing heat resistant gloves allows for safer handling of opened gas canisters.

Do your best to protect your identity and the identity of others. Police can use video and photo evidence to charge, track down, and sometimes kill protesters. Prevent this by not taking or posting photos or video content that shows identifiable features of protesters.

  1. Wearing all black will make it more difficult to identify and single-out individual protesters.

If you are anticipating violent responses from police, consider padding one of your forearms to help dampen the impact of baton blows.

If you need a medic for yourself or anyone you see injured shout “medic” as loud of you can and cross your arms over your head. People will direct them towards you and they’ll see the signal (the crossed arms) and know where to go.

If the possibility of arrests is strong, write needed information and phone numbers on your body with Permanent Marker. Some examples of these phone numbers are:

  1. Legal Rights Center: 612-337-0030
  2. National Lawyers Guild: 612-444-2654

If you are taken into police custody, DO NOT share any information, including information that you think is useless (don't tell them what you had for breakfast, your first-grade teacher, your pet's name. Nothing)

Travel with at least one other person.

Anti-Surveillance Techniques

Make sure that you have a long password with numbers & letters on your phone. Do not use thumbprint or facial recognition for your lock screen. Your phone is a dangerous tool for police to have access to. They are able to use it to trace other protesters that you have been in contact and proximity of.

  1. If you have an Android phone, make sure to go into your security settings and select full disk encryption.
  2. Make sure that your phone's location tracking is disabled.

Use encrypted messaging apps like Signal, Wickr, or WhatsApp.

Police use Automated License Plate Readers (ALRPs) to track any movement in the vicinity of the protest. It is best to walk or bike to protests, but if you are unable to avoid driving, park away from the location and walk from there.

Phone photos often contain metadata, which can easily be used to figure out where and when said photo was taken. The easiest way to strip metadata is to transfer it to your computer, take a screenshot, and post the screenshot instead.

DIY Protest Equipment

A bicycle helmet can be used to protect your head if you do not have access to construction helmets.

Swim Goggles can help protect against the effects of Pepper Spray and Tear Gas on the eyes.

  1. Be aware , this WILL NOT protect against nose and throat effects.

Wearing two layers of clothing with cardboard between can help dampen the force of impacts.

If you don't have gloves, bringing oven mitts or cleaning gloves may allow you to briefly handle active tear gas cannisters.

Bandanas, socks, and scarves can be turned into masks to conceal your identity and protect against larger debris.

Elbow and knee pads can be worn to protect yourself if falling or crawling.

Keep in mind the goals of the protest and who you are fighting for. Especially for white folx, we need to understand that this war is being fought for Black People. We need to put our time, money, and bodies on the front line to help and protect those effected daily by the Racist Police and Military State we are protesting against.