There are many ways for non violent protests to be held. After all, there is no reason for the word protest to be associated with violence of any kind. Here is an overview of “Suppliers and Handlers Boycott”, which is one of the more popular boycotts that workers can enact if they are not pleased with a particular situation. There are many occasions where such boycotts and protests have taken place and they are generally very successful. It is all about ensuring that the peaceful protest will impact those who are being protested in a negative manner. This will ensure them to act as a result of the protest.
This protest involves a refusal from workers or middlemen (distributors, wholesalers) to supply goods. This may happen because they are unhappy with the quality/type of goods being put out or by the actions of the firms that are selling them the goods. They may also not like the conditions that led to the production/distribution of these goods. For example, if goods are produced under conditions of worker abuse, then sellers may boycott using this peaceful protest to send a message to the big company.
One of the earliest suppliers and handlers boycotts took place in Italy in 1912. This protest was against the marble quarry strike. The workers refused to load sand that was meant to go to the quarry, these workers ensured that cutting marbles was impossible. It was the perfect protest because there was nothing the quarry owners could do but eventually come to some sort of agreement with the workers. The workers had hit the owners in a place where they could not find an alternative. There was no other place to get the sand needed for the process of cutting marbles, so the boycott was a success.
It is all about planning a strike. For example, if you plan a strike in the wrong way then the company will simply go around you and ignore your peaceful protest. If you involve workers who are indispensable , then the protest is likely to be a success.
Throughout the years, these protests have continued. There was a workers’ protest in Czechoslovakia in the 1940’s as well as one in Iran during 1951. These protests produced mixed results, but they showed that workers can have power as long as they wield it correctly. It also showed that protests do not have to revolve around violence or destruction of property.
Continue reading the 198 Methods of Nonviolent Action.