Civility First has received a number of questions.
HERE ARE ANSWERS TO THE MOST POPULAR.
Q: Does “civility” mean giving up my voice or my opinions?
A: Absolutely not. Civility First is a great supporter of the diversity of opinions that exist in our world. We recognize that uncivil behavior keeps us from listening to and learning about opinions differing from our own. We advocate learning the skills of respectful communication so that we can work together to solve problems and create a future that will serve us all.
Q: What do I say to people who say “I don’t want to be civil”?
A: We understand that when emotions run high, or when we are attacked for our opinions, we are not inclined to be civil. At the same time, when we model civil behavior, and when we respectfully call out the uncivil behavior of others, it creates the safe environment we need to have meaningful dialogue. Civility is the first step to making any progress on issues that matter to us.
Q: What should I say, if I want to help spread the word about Civility First on social media?
A: Use your own words, and say what engages you, of course. But here’s what one of us posted: “Do you believe that listening to each other would help left and right work together to solve the problems that face our society? Are you willing to speak up for setting a better example of public behavior for our children? To commit to do my part I just signed the “Civility First Pledge.” Check it out now at www.civilityfirst.org.”
Q: Can Civility First help me get together with people on the other side of the political aisle to discuss an issue I care about in a forum that aspires to put civility first?
A: Civility First does not at present sponsor such forums, but we certainly hope you will insist on the use of Civility First principles in laying out the groundrules for forums you participate in or initiate. We recommend that you attend one of our workshops on civil communications to prepare for such roles.
Q: How do I sign up for a Civility First workshop, to learn more about the techniques of nonviolent communication and how to react when others are verbally abusive?
A: Right now, at the start of 2023, we are offering the workshops every month on Zoom. To register for the next workshop, see this page. At the present time we are also focusing on offering workshops to groups and organizations who desire to put expectations and procedures in place that encourage civil interactions. Do you belong to a group that would benefit from such a workshop, for example, workgroups, service clubs, or churches? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire.
Q: I'm an educator and would like more information on involving my students in this work. Is this possible?
In 2023 we are looking to work with schools and other educators to produce ready-made curricula that is appropriate for students in middle and high school (and possibly elementary school). These curricula would also include participation in our annual art contest. If you are an educator and would like more information, please contact us at Civility1st@gmail.com.
Q: How can I help your efforts?
A: In addition to helping spread the word and encourage civic leaders to sign the pledge and act accordingly, you can volunteer to participate in our activities. We depend on volunteers - - you can join a committee, such as the Art Contest Committee, the Workshop Committee, the or the Fundraising Committee. You’re welcome to march with us in parades! We need help staffing the booths, as well. – It’s fun, try it! Over 500 people stopped by for conversation or to encourage us recently at the Island County Fair. If you would like to serve on a committee, please send a brief biographical sketch to help us identify your relevant background and skills, to us at email@example.com.
Q: Is Civility First a a 501(c)3 organization? Are donations tax-deductible? Where can I send money?
A: Yes, yes, and yes! We are approved by the IRS as an exempt non-profit organization, and will put your donations to good use for expenses such as printing, website, and publicity costs. Send your check to:
PO Box 1571
Coupeville, WA 98239
PO Box 1571
Coupeville, WA 98239