Workshops

Current list of workshops included below — check back before the action camp for any updates!
Direct Action Track:

First Aid training (8 hr extensive training):
Within an affinity group (AG), the medic’s role is to focus inwards on the health and saftey of what is by definition a collective of people who are putting themselves in an at-risk situation to accomplish a direct action This training provides basic skills necessary to respond to emergencies and to address basic  community health needs.

Intro to nonviolent direct action:

This is one of the most central and important trainings we will offer at the camp, offering an introducting to the basic tenets and practices of nonviolent direct action and discussion of its application to Ohio’s movement against fracking.  All are welcome regardless of your experience level or interest in participating in nonviolent direct actions.

Blockades:
Creating a blockade is among the most simple and effective tools used for nonviolent direct action. A group can blockade a site simply by intentionally standing or sitting in the way of vehicles attempting to access the site, and more advanced blockades can present longer-lasting barriers to a site.

A basic tutorial of several useful barricade techniques with and without materials will be given by trainers from Seeds of Peace, a collective with over 25 years experience supporting a diverse array of effective actions in urban and rural areas.

De-Escalation

A workshop in keeping yourself and those around you calm and safe during actions and protests.  This training can be especially helpful for dealing with frustrated workers, community members, police, and protesters in a tense action situation.  Many of these skills also extend into everyday peace-keeping and mediation.

Media:
Perhaps the most important element to a successful action is the media coverage it gets! With knowledge of the workings of media, you can have some control over the message that comes out to the public. Extensive media training facilitated by Dana Kuhnline of Mountain Justice, including individual hour-long sessions on:

  • Nuts and bolts of “traditional media” & social media
  • Messaging

Legal observation:
At most actions, it is a good idea to have at least one designated legal observer. The legal observer is responsible for observing all interactions between the crowd and police, and taking notes on any legal aspects of the action. This documentation will be crucial if any charges are pressed and testimony needs to be given. National Lawyers Guild (NLG) attorney Dan Gregor will conduct training on how to be a legal observer at rallies and other actions, including tips on proper documentation of police/activist interactions.

Know-your-rights:

National Lawyers Guild (NLG) attorney Dan Gregor will provide the Know-Your-Rights workshop, arming you with the knowledge you will need to navigate interactions with police both during and outside of actions. This workshop will give a basic overview of the rights you have under the US constitution, as well as helpful ways to exercise these rights during interactions with officers of the law.

Jail support:
Training on everything you need to support your friends and allies who go to jail for justice (or other reasons). This workshop will address how to prepare someone for entry into the judicial system, how to contact them in jail, how to post bond and more.

Police liaison:
At every action, it is a good idea to have at least one individual to mediate interactions between activists and police officers. Communication with officers of the law is usually necessary, and it is important that it be conducted thoughtfully. This workshop will explore methods of effectively speaking to police.

Security Culture:
In a movement of resistance, the lines between shielding yourself from legal repression and paralyzing relationships between activists and groups can become blurry. This workshop will take a look at “security culture” and explore effective norms for protecting ourselves from the state and gas industry without undermining communication and movement-building.

Prison-industrial complex:
When
engaging in direct actions that involve intentional arrest it is essential that activists have a thorough understanding of the system that they are about to enter into.  This workshop will offer a history of the American prison system and analyze the current state of this pervasive and abusive institution.

Organizing Communities for Resistance;

Fracking 101:
This workshop will begin with an overview of the technology behind fracking, then proceed through a basic history of the practice, politics, and economics surrounding hydraulic fracturing. The workshop will go on to present an overview of different forms of resistance that have challenged the natural gas industry. We will conclude by discussing how-to give a fracking 101 presentation and brainstorm effective methods of education that participants can bring back to their communities.


Navigating the ODNR:

This workshop with Elisa Young will focus on managing various difficulties in dealing with the ODNR. Topics will include how to navigate the ODNR website to locate wells and monitor permits as well as how to properly make a records request. Workshop will conclude with strategy session on working together to pursue public records, focusing on injection well monitoring and brine-hauler tracking.

Water-Testing:
This workshop will serve as introduction to water-testing methods and procedures as well as what test results can be used for and why water-testing can be important. There will be hands-on demonstrations of simple baseline water testing methods and information on helpful labs in the region as well as other available resources related to water-testing. Participants will also receive training in reading and understanding water-test results and be directed towards existing databases to record and, eventually, utilize this data.

Community Organizing:
This workshop will provide some useful tools for creating an effective movement within your community. It will offer a step-by-step template for progressing from scratch to forming a concentrated and committed core of concerned citizens in your community.

Intro to Anti-Oppression
This workshop will provide a space to discuss systems of oppression such as racism, sexism, and classism that impact the structures and relationships of our movements and campaigns, opening a conversation on how to combat oppression within the movement against hydrofracking.

Fundraising:
As many of us know one of the hardest aspects of activism is chronic lack of funds. This workshop will outline how to find appropriate grants and other sources of funds and apply for them.

Community Watchdogging:
One of the most tangible and simple ways that we can begin helping our communities in the fight against fracking is to mercilessly watch and document activities of the industry in our region. The employment of this tactic in other communities has caused the industry great embarrassment which has led to remediation of issues such as flaring, brine dumping, etc.

Building Urban/Rural Solidarity:
While rural communities are on the frontlines of the fracking struggle, urban communities in the Marcellus and Utica shale regions are also severely impacted and have a critical role to play.  We hear from rural landowners who are opposed to fracking and feel isolated in their communities and urban residents who feel disempowered to effect what’s going on in communities that are not their own.  Drawing from our experience organizing in Pittsburgh, we’d like to open up discussion about bridging this gap, working across cultural differences, and supporting each other to fight for our shared land, air and water. Facilitated by the shadbush collective, a Pittsburgh-based environmental justice collective.

Gas Money in Politics:
It’s no secret at this point that Ohio politicians are bought by many industries, including oil and gas.  This workshop will introduce methods of finding out just how much politicians have taken and how to best expose that information so as to hold them accountable. Workshop by Karen from priceofoil.org.

Facilitation: Fighting Oppression Internally
This workshop will explore different methods of facilitation that can be used to combat oppression within the movement against fracking. Facilitated by Molly Shea.

Health Care Professionals in the Fight Against Fracking
This workshop will explore the various ways health care professionals can use their knowledge and experience to support the movement against fracking. Facilitated by Donna Carver.

Panels/Discussions:

Local Control:
This panel will explore different options for taking back control over fracking at the level of local governments. Panelists include Vanessa Pesac from NEOGAP and Susie Beiersdorfer of Youngstown. Facilitated by Colleen Unroe.

Energy justice & extractive industries:
This afternoon discussion will cover extractive industries from gas and oil to uranium and coal. We will discuss parallels between the practices and problems of each of these industries with a focus on the relationship of extraction to movements for environmental justice.

Impacted community panel:
This panel will feature Ohio and Pennsylvania residents who will speak about living in communities with hydraulic fracturing and provide stories of resistance to extractive industries. Discussion between panelists and audience members to follow introductory statements.

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