Phone Bank/ Community Tools for Engagement

SUGGESTED SCRIPT FOR ENGAGING OVER THE PHONE

(Updated April 15)

  • This script is intended as a guided way for us to keep our community safe, educated, politically engaged, and taking action
  •  It works best if people feel the sincerity of intent and effort, but not effective if you are just reading a script, or trying to get through things
  • Ideally the calls take around 20 minutes
  • You are welcome to take, adjust, and use the script as needed

CONNECTION (~2min)

  1. Introduce self, from FCCAN, reaching out to our communities in this time of crisis, for peoples’ safety and for justice in this crisis.
  2. How are you doing? Are you safe? Are you feeling safe? 

SAFETY (~7min)

  1. Do you know the best practices of staying safe?
  • There are two ways you can get sick:
    1. You touch a common surface that other sick people have touched (elevator buttons, door handles, cash, etc) or sneezed or coughed on, and then you touch your face, mouth, nose, or eyes with that hand 
    2. Someone who is sick sneezes, coughs, exhales smoke or medicine, or talks into your face and you inhale that air immediately or even at a later time
  • Three things to prevent sickness:
    1. Keep your hands clean. Wash with soap for at least 20 seconds to get all parts of hand. Soap most effectively kills the virus. Wear gloves if you go outside your home. Don’t reuse the gloves. Don’t touch commonly used surfaces (elevator buttons, door handles, cash, ATM, bus poles, playgrounds, etc), and if you do, then wash or sanitize your gloves or hands. Don’t touch your face except with freshly washed hands.
    2. Protect your face. Wear a mask if you go outside. A simple surgical mask is best, or if not available then use cloth masks or wrap a scarf. The masks prevent you from touching your own face, and from inhaling air that is carrying the virus as a result of someone sneezing or coughing. If someone in your home is sick, then it is better to wear masks when utilizing the commonly shared areas. If you don’t have enough masks, disinfect them after every use by steaming them over boiling water for 10 minutes. Treat the outside of the mask as infected, and put it on, take it off, and store it as if it is infected. If your mask is damaged or dirty, please dispose it in the trash. They are a health risk.
    3. Keep physical distance from people, and stay indoors. Only go outside for essential things. Don’t go to peoples’ homes. Don’t invite people over. If you are outside, stay more than 6 feet away from people. Wear a mask if you go outside. You want to minimize breathing in air that other people just breathed out. If someone from your house has to go out, for groceries, then it should always be that same person going out. It should not be someone who is sick, has other health issues, or is older.
  • If you or someone you know gets sick:
    1. Have them physically isolate themselves from others even within home
    2. Do NOT go to the emergency room. You could get more sick, or make others sick. Call your doctor, and ask what you should do.
      • Call 911 if you are having trouble breathing or other symptoms that require immediate attention.
    3. If you or someone you know is actually diagnosed with coronavirus, DO NOT hide it from people. Call and tell all people you had contact with in the week before you got sick. We have to protect each other.
    4. If someone you know or a neighbor is sick, find out what support they need. If they need food or medicine, leave it at their door and then let them know you left it for them. We have to take care of each other.

EDUCATE (~7min)

  1. One of the things we are finding is that there is a lot of wrong information or lack of information in our communities. What are the things you are concerned or need more information about? 
  • Shutdown
    • The state-wide shutdown in CO will continue at least until April 26, but will very likely go longer.
    • Most businesses are closed, except essentials like grocery stores, pharmacies, hospitals.
    • People should not gather together.
    • If you leave home for essential things like grocery or medicine, wear a mask and gloves.
  • Employment
    • If you are currently unemployed:
      1. If you are documented, you can apply for unemployment benefits
        • Online here.
        • By Phone: 303-318-9000 (Monday-Friday, 8am-7:30pm; Saturday-Sunday, 7:30am-8:00 pm)
        • Undocumented people cannot apply for unemployment
        • Fuerza Latina has an emergency fund for undocumented immigrants, you can call the Hotline to find out more information.
  • Housing
    • The state government has advised that landlords don’t have to make mortgage payments for 3 months
      1. If you are a landlord, call your bank to make arrangements for your mortgage payments to be suspended
      2. If you are a tenant, tell your landlord to contact their mortgage lender and demand a mortgage freeze or suspension
    • There are no evictions for at least until June
    • This means that if you don’t have a lot of money saved up, you should save your money for essential things like food, and not for rent
      1. Talk to the other tenants and make agreements to not pay rent
      2. Many tenants are organizing rent strikes
      3. Colorado 9 to 5 and many organizations are working on passing a law to cancel the rent (and mortgages and utility bills)
    • If your landlord is also poor, and depends on the rental income for survival or has to pay for utilities, work out an agreement with them for partial payment or a payment plan. Take care of each other.
  • Health
    • Coronavirus:
      1. Testing for coronavirus is hard to find, but it is free.
      2. Right now, there is no coverage of the costs for coronavirus treatment
      3. If you need to get tested call your healthcare provider.
    • If you need access to general healthcare and don’t have a healthcare provider contact Salud Family Health Centers (Fort Collins and Estes Park) or Sunrise Community Health (Loveland).
    • If you need access to mental health: Call 888-493-8255
  • Immigration
    • ICE is continuing to do raids. We don’t know if they are more, or less, or same as before, but they are happening.
  • Schools
    • Poudre District schools are closed for this school year. All classes and education is online. Contact your school to get computers, equipment, or internet service.
  • Government stimulus
    • The federal government passed a 2 trillion dollar package on March 27
    • Most of the money went for large corporations
    • Only some money is for people who are struggling. Those with social security numbers can apply. The benefit is $1200 per adult, and $500 per child. The checks will be directly deposited into your accounts in next few weeks, or will be mailed to you in the next couple of months. If someone calls you to get your account information, it is a scam.
  • Mental Health
    • This is a time of great stress for many people, and it will likely get worse
    • Make sure to make some time everyday to do things that relax you or calm you
    • Find people you can talk to regularly to relieve the stress
    • If you need access to mental health: Call 888-493-8255
  • Scams
    • Be aware that many people are doing scams in this time
      1. NEVER GIVE OUT your social security number or your bank account information over phone, at the door, or at unknown websites 
      2. NO government agency or official should be coming to your home for taxes, or for coronavirus testing, or unemployment benefits, or stimulus check
      3. NO government agency or official should be calling you and asking you for your personal information for taxes, or for coronavirus testing, or unemployment benefits, or stimulus check
        • For unemployment benefits, you will have to call them. They will not be calling you.
      4. The only exception and place of confusion is the Census. The best thing to do is to fill out your census form online at http://my2020census.gov. That way if anyone contacts you by mail, phone or at your door about census you can say that you already did it. 
      5. If someone comes to your door claiming to be police or immigration, ask them for a warrant. If they don’t have a warrant, tell them to go away, don’t open the door and ignore them.

AGITATE (~7min)

  1. Why is all of this happening? Why is the richest country in the world having the worst crisis because of the coronavirus?
    • Our government for years has decided that it is not going to take responsibility for the health and well-being of people. It says that corporations and business can take care of everything
    • Corporations and businesses will not do anything if they cannot make a profit
    • We need government and systems that take care of people’s needs first.
    • We have to organize together to make that happen.
  2. Whose needs are being taken care of first? Whose needs are being taken care of last or not at all?
    • The corporations and the rich are being taken care of first
      • They have access to testing, and more support for treatment, while we do not
      • They can get tested even if they have no symptoms, and it’s hard for us to get tested even if we are having major problems
      • The stimulus goes mostly to corporations and businesses, and working people only get a small amount
    • But it is clear that the economy is hurting because it is working people who are having to stay home
      • This is a critical time in American history
      • We have to fight to change things so that poor and working people, who make this economy run, are taken care of
      • The only way things will change is if we have power and if we take action
        1. The only way for us to have power is by numbers and being organized. Thats why we are making these calls. It’s to provide you information, but also to get you involved. And ask you to get others involved.
        2. We can take action, even from our homes through making calls, signing petitions for rent strikes. But the effective action will be from our labor. There are calls for a general strike on May 1st. The ask is for people to not buy anything, not go to work, and not to pay rent. Would you be interested in participating in a general strike?

ACTION (2min)

  1. Did you find the information in this conversation useful? We want to make sure the maximum number of people in our communities are safe, informed, and aware of what is going on. You can help by taking action too:
    • Action calls:
      • Sign petition to cancel rent
      • Fill out your census. The census plays a role in making sure we have enough healthcare facilities and supplies (and many other things) based on the size of our population. It only takes 10 minutes. my2020census.gov 
        1. Let me know if you: 
          • already filled it out
          • will fill it out yourself
          • or want someone from FCCAN to call you and help you fill it out
        2. The census is required to be filled out by everyone by law. There is a chance that census workers will go knock on doors of people if they haven’t filled census out, or scammers will pretend to do that. That can be dangerous and confusing for people. The best thing to do is fill out the census in advance so you don’t have to worry about door knocks, or potential scams.
      • Contacts: It is important that we talk to as many people as possible to make sure they have the right information to be safe, educated, aware of what’s going on, and taking action.
        1. Are you interested in doing these same kinds of conversations with other people? If so, I can share with you how to do it.

CLOSE (1min)

  1. Thank you so much for taking time to talk to me. These are very difficult times, and the only way we will make it through is if we take care of each other, and take action for our safety, our rights and justice.