Call Scripts are just a guide for you to use your authentic voice and language to address issues of concern. For this script we are asking you to boycott prison labor exploitation. Make sure you familiarize yourself with the issue before making a call- or sending an email. Generally, you are just leaving a message, or receiving a stock response-- but someone somewhere is cataloging the content of those messages and we are hoping to reach a critical mass of resistance. For boycotting calls, or calling in to elected officials, the general protocol is:

    1. Be polite. If you are able to say something good about the company before you express your disappointment, do it. It's a great way to get your reader on side. For Instance, "I have enjoyed your companies products through out the years, but recently learned that you are abusing prison labor- ...."
    2. Stick to the facts. Try not to let any emotion or judgment spill out. Reference articles and facts in the call or email.
    3. Don't use unfounded threats. Be able to say I will no longer use your company, and be able to follow through.  Hyperbole is not useful.
    4. Shorter is better. Keep the information to the point.
    5. Include a brief history of the issue and any correspondence so far, if it's helpful.
     6. Do not accept being passed back to customer services, unless it's with a named person and with a promise of follow-up.
     7. State your desired outcome. Determine this before you call or email.  Be able to explain clearly what you want as a solution or outcome. For instance, "I would gladly continue using your company and encourage the 10 or so friends who are boycotting, if you could publicly apologize for your actions, and commit to paying inmates at least minimum wage for their services."

 

Script for Prison Labor Divestment Below: (can be modified for email)

Hello, I am calling to speak with "________".  My name is "_________" and I have enjoyed your products for the last 10 years however I recently learned from (state news source) that you are exploiting prison labor and paying people .45 cents per hour to (insert job). Please let (Executive's Full Name) know that as a conscious consumer, I will go out of my way to use products from other companies until this is resolved. I am also committed to sharing this information through social media and with as many people as possible.

We can and should do better. Exploiting human labor for profit is unacceptable practice, especially in country that was founded and built through the egregious abuses of chattel labor.

I expect that you review your practices and look for ways to pay people equitably for their labor- regardless of whether or not they are incarcerated. Until (insert company's name) is able to do so and issue a public apology I will be one of many divesting from your goods.

Looking forward to better practices,

(Your full name and possibly where you live)

eg: Chelsea Rodgers, Minneapolis, Minnesota