It took us one year, numerous tabling sessions, and several presentations by a former union member from the Coca-Cola bottling plant in Carepa, Colombia, but we've "won"! Coca-Cola is no longer being sold at the College of DuPage (Note my usage of "won." We won't have a victory until Coke stops the killing of its Colombian unionists).
It's a small step, given that Coca-Cola is sold just about everywhere. But it's an important step nonetheless. It is a step (the boycott) which has been requested by Coke's Colombian unionists, and the survivors of those assassinated. Thus we were glad to comply, and thought we would set up this webpage to help you in your campaign against Coke.
Our campaign was a small, as College of DuPage has a contract with Pepsi. This contract stipulates the campus' foodservice contractor may bring in other products if Pepsi does not make a competing product. Thus, we ended up with Odwalla Juice Drinks in our cafeteria. And Odwalla, several years ago, was purchased by the Coca-Cola Company. But it pissed us off, walking by that Odwalla cooler every day while Colombian unionists were being intimidated, harassed, and killed.
The initial efforts of our campaign focused upon informing the student body and surrounding community about Coke's human-rights record. To do this, we hosted several tables directly outside the campus' cafeteria (the only location on campus where Odwalla was sold). We distributed numerous handouts regarding Coke and its unionists in Colombia. We looped news story about the lawsuit against Coke, playing it for hours on end. And we also brought Luis Adolfo Cardona to campus, for both education and motivation.
Materials you'll want to consider using:
Deadguy Flyer (great visual)
Customizable Flyer (from the Colombian Action Network, if you're going to get Luis to your campus - this is an important thing to do).
Involving Student Government
A key step to your campaign will be involving student government, your faculty association, and other constituency groups.
Also, be sure to check out The Campaign to Stop Killer Coke's page on student activism.
The Road to "Victory"
Prof. Keith Yearman went before the campus' Dining Services Committee and presented a PowerPoint on the Coke killings. We also presented a number of petitions signed by students and community members calling for the product's removal.
Soon thereafter, quietly, the cafeteria staff removed the Odwalla cooler and replaced it with Naked.
Is it enough? Not nearly. But it's a start.
If you want to talk about your campaign, feel free to call Prof. Yearman (Adviser to Campus Greens) at 630-942-2765.