Why are Quakers taking action against the DSEI arms fair?
Read our epistle here.
What is DSEI, anyway?
See About DSEI here.
Who are Roots of Resistance?
You can read about who we are here.
What are Roots of Resistance going to do?
You can read out action briefing here.
When are Quakers taking action to disrupt the DSEI arms fair?
Roots of Resistance is taking action in the run up to DSEI on Tuesday 3rd September 2019, as part of the No Faith in War day. See the action briefing here. You can read about what’s happening across the whole No Faith in War day here (page 2 has the day plan on). Quakers are also taking part in a silent, candle-lit vigil in the evening before the arms fair opens (9th September). Young Quakers are particularly welcome at this event, and staff from the Children & Young People’s Team of Quaker Life will be on hand. Find the info here.
During the week of action there is likely to be Quakers taking part in the various days of action. Check out Stop the Arms Fair’s website for more info.
If I am not a Quaker can I join?
Yes! Everyone who is happy to take action alongside Quakers and in line with our action consensus (which you can find at the bottom of this page) is welcome to join us. Please sign up to our mailing list to find out more.
Will there be toilets?
Portaloos will be organised at the site of action. There are also ‘inside’ toilets at the hotel (downstairs lobby and coffee shop) which are directly next to the site. The ExCel centre have given permission (in writing) for people to use their accessible toilets.
Where can I stay?
If you’re travelling from outside London and need a place to stay overnight, then please fill in this form and let us know your needs: https://forms.gle/JBM6JgLSfthMFjmLA We will try and match you up with a place! Please note, if we get the 1000 Quakers we would like, it’s very unlikely we will be able to accommodate everyone who needs it! So if you have somewhere that you usually stay in London e.g. with friends or family, then please consider doing that.
I live in London – can I put someone up for the night?
YES PLEASE! Fill in the form here: https://forms.gle/hY8AyJMVxnGK5q878
- Please find out whether there are others travelling from your area and whether you may be able to share transport, making it cheaper. Some areas are arranging a mini bus or coach, which will be substantially cheaper than solo travel
- Could your meeting support you? Overseers generally have a pot of money available to them to support Friends. If you are able to do so then you could ask them for support to enable your Quaker witness against war
- Finally, you could write to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject ‘Financial support’ and include your name, Quaker community, travel costs, and what contribution towards them you would need. We will get back to you as soon as possible to let you know whether we can help.
What legal information and support will be offered?
Green and Black Cross’s website is a great place to find information about interacting with the police.
There will be legal information given at the Roots of Resistance briefing taking place in Friends House, 173-177 Euston Rd, London NW1 2BJ, on Monday 2nd September from 5.30pm.
Because we’re not lawyers, this will be information rather than legal advice.
Legal support e.g. supporting people who get arrested will be arranged either within your affinity group if you have one (read our guide to working in an affinity group here), or there will be a Roots of Resistance person ready to do this. If you are planning to take arrestable action we will ask you for some information about yourself e.g. if there’s anyone you’d like to be told if you are arrested, on the briefing taking place the night before.
I don’t want to get arrested, should I still come?
Yes, please do! We recognise that there are lots of reasons why people may not want to risk arrest. Whilst a lot of disruption can occur through people taking action that might put them at risk of arrest, it’s extremely important to have the support of many non-arrestable people to make these actions possible, as well as to undertake other kinds of creative actions (our action plan includes taking part in meetings for worship, singing protest songs, and taking part in a collective Quaker “craftivist” tapestry), to witness what’s happening, and to do other kinds of work e.g. social media.
As the Green and Black Cross’ guide to planning an action (‘Will I be Arrested?’) says, you will often get some warning before arrests occur: either direct warnings, or a change in the police atmosphere, so it is often an active choice to take arrestable action.
At both the briefing the night before, and during the action itself, we will be as clear as we possibly can about what kinds of actions would put you at risk of arrest, so you can choose what actions to take.
We recommend you look at ‘Know your rights’ on the Stop the Arms Fair website.
Where can I find out more and meet people who are coming along?
Lots of Area Meetings have an area organiser who is mobilising Quakers to come and resist DSEI with Roots of Resistance. Ask around in your Area Meeting to find out who that is, or write to us and ask if there’s someone doing this in your region. If there isn’t, maybe you’d like to volunteer?!
You can also have a look at our page on events and training for upcoming opportunities in case there’s something near you.
There will be a briefing from 5.30pm on Monday 2nd September in Friends House, 173-177 Euston Rd, London NW1 2BJ. This will be a chance to hear about plans for the next day, for legal information and a meeting for worship.
If I can’t make it down to London in September, is there a way I can take part?
Yes! You could…
- tell other people about Roots of Resistance!
- make some mini banners and put them around your local town centre with messages about the impacts of the arms trade, and the UK government’s role in it
- follow us on social media and share content.
- hold a Meeting for Worship in your local town centre during DSEI. You could also sing a protest song (there’ll be some up on our website soon!)
- contribute financially so that we can help people to attend DSEI – write to us and we’ll put you in touch with our treasurer
- contact your MP about arms sales to Saudi Arabia
I have another question that’s not on here!