29 Sep 2022
To secure warm homes for everyone, we need to show that the public wants politicians to act. The more people involved in your campaign, the stronger and more impactful it’ll be.
One way to show strong public support is to set up a petition. A petition is an effective way of growing your mailing list, recruiting new people to your campaign and demonstrating to decision makers that there’s collective support for our solutions to the energy crisis.
We need your group to gather as many petition signatures as possible throughout this spring and summer. We’ll then hand in these petitions to our local politicians during a day of action in autumn 2023.
We’ll make it clear to our local politicians that their voters care deeply about this issue, and that to get elected next time they need to commit to taking action.
When to set up your petition
It’s a good idea to have your petition set up before starting activities in your community to build local support.
By having your petition ready to go, you can make all your other campaign tactics more effective. Every time you hold a stall, organise an event or post on social media, you can gather more petition signatures and show the local strength growing behind your campaign.
Our petitions are calling on decision makers to take action on our 3 main campaign goals.
In England the petitions are aimed at our local MPs. We want to make clear to MPs that, in order to get elected in the 2024 general election, they need to commit to taking action for warm homes for all.
Due to devolution of decision making and specific national opportunities, in Wales the petitions are aimed at the Welsh Government, while in Northern Ireland the petitions are aimed at Members of the Legislative Assembly.
Setting up your petition
We’ve created everything you need to get going, including online and paper templates. To get started, simply fill in this form and let us know you’d like to host a petition.
We’ll then contact you to set your group up with a petition on Action Network – a digital platform designed to support local campaigning.
Paper templates are also available for in-person activities. We’d encourage you to use the online version where possible to save time adding signatories to your mailing list.
We recommend using the petition wording included in the templates so that we’re all calling for the same thing within each nation. This’ll make our collective voice stronger and amplify our demands. However, you can make the introduction and explanation locally relevant so that it’s more engaging to the people signing it.
The wording about future communications in the templates is also GDPR-compliant, so we’d encourage you to copy it to ensure you have consent to keep in touch with people about your campaign.
Using your petition to build partnerships
Your petition will also be a great way to invite local partners to support the campaign. If you haven’t yet reached out to other groups or organisations working on the energy and cost-of-living crises, this could be a good first step. And, if you’ve already established campaign partners, then collaborating on a petition is a great way for them to get involved.
Having a partner support the petition might involve asking them to:
- Add their logo to show the community they back the campaign’s demands. You can add their logo as an image on Action Network and insert it next to yours on paper versions. Not only does this add more authority to your petition, but it also makes the campaign more collaborative.
- Share it with their mailing list. This’ll help grow the number of signatures and raise awareness.
- Have a physical copy in their space and at events. This works particularly well when you’re able to partner with organisations working with people most impacted by the crisis.
- Share it on social media. Ask them to use the hashtag #UnitedforWarmHomes and tag your account.
By working with partners, we can grow support for the campaign and ensure a diverse range of people are demanding warm homes. Read more about working in partnership and why it’s central to this campaign.
Asking partners to share your petition is a great first step. You should also share it during all your community engagement activities and campaign tactics. Use your petition at every possible opportunity to keep building your support base and collective power. Here are some ideas on where to share your petition:
- On social media as much as possible, tagging other groups who’ve agreed to also host the petition. When you share info about your campaign online, it’s important to include an action people can take – your petition will be great for this.
- At in-person events or activities to make the most of conversations you have while out in your community. Be sure to include “opt-in” wording (see our templates) so you have permission to contact people after the event.
- With local media outlets via a press release or letter to the editor. Consult our guide to getting local media coverage if you need a few tips to get you started.
- On posters and leaflets so people can easily get involved when they’re out and about.
Top tip: create a shortened link to the petition using bitly.com or tinyurl.com to make it easier to share.
As more people sign your petition and join your mailing list, it’ll be important to keep them engaged. Stay in touch with your mailing list at regular but reasonable intervals – no more than once a week ideally.
If someone’s taken action with you once, it’s quite likely they’ll do so again. You just need to give them the opportunity. Offer something for everyone to get involved with – from signing petitions to coming along to meetings – so you can keep growing your campaign and make our demand for warm homes too powerful to ignore.
Here’s a quick summary of next steps:
- Set up a local petition. Fill in this short form to let us know you’re ready to host one.
- Get in touch with other groups working on the energy and cost-of-living crises in your area and see if they’ll host the petition alongside you.
- Get out into your community to gather support. Make sure you have your petition available throughout all your campaign tactics to help build power.
- Build the number of signatures throughout spring and summer, ready to hand in to local politicians in autumn 2023.
We’re here to help – get in touch if you’d like support to set up or promote your petition.