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Sample Press Release

One of the primary ways to ensure that your message reaches as many people as possible is to be certain your protest is covered by the media. In order to make that happen, you will need to submit a press release to your local media outlets including newspapers, radio stations, news outlets, and popular local blogs. Be sure to source online regional calendars as well so that you can obtain maximum support for your protest.


A sample press release is provided below. Simply customize the document where noted, and submit to media outlets 5-7 days before your event. Check each media outlet's website for instructions on where to submit a press release. Note that some online calendars advertise events far in advance so be sure to look for those opportunities several weeks ahead of your event if possible. In order to maximize response to your press release, do follow up with phone calls. Poll your group of protesters to find out whether anyone has media connections, as personal "friend-to-friend" requests are always beneficial to receiving coverage.


If you require additional assistance with your press release or media communications, please contact us.

Sample Press Release to simply cut and paste, edit, and send.

For Immediate Release:                                                                                         

(NAME: PHONE)     



Animal-based circus performance draws scorn of local residents


(City, State) – On (Day), (Month, Date), a group of local community members led by (city)-based resident, (name of primary organizer or organization), will come together to protest an event held by (name of circus) at (location the circus is being held at).


“We believe it is important to expose the truth of what circus animals endure,” says (protest organizer). “Individuals who attend circuses are often unaware of the rampant cruelty that exists and the deplorable living conditions and misery the animals suffer. With our protest, we endeavor to shine a light on this abuse and give the elephants and other animals confined to circus life a voice.”


Currently there is a worldwide movement to end the use of animals in circuses. Many countries and several U.S. cities have successfully banned circuses that utilize animal acts after learning that, in the hands of their “trainers”, the animals endure repeated and prolonged suffering. Sharp instruments called bullhooks, whips, tight collars, and electric prods are used to force the animals into doing unnatural postures like standing on their hind legs or performing synchronized movements. Nearly all circuses have a long history of abuse, neglect, and documented USDA violations of animal cruelty. (Note: if there are no elephants in the circus you are writing about, omit references to bullhooks.)


(If available, insert a couple of brief sentences about current news issues. For instance, the closing of Ringling Brothers Circus due to animal abuse concerns, or the passing of a local ban on the use of bullhooks or wild animals in entertainment.)


(If available, site specific instances of violations perpetrated by the circus visiting your area in two or three sentences here.) 


Mr./Ms. (name) states, “The time when the abuse of other living beings for the purposes of entertainment is over. We call on the residents of (town) to avoid the circus performance (s) being held on (dates) and to join us in letting the public know the real truth of what takes place behind the circus tents.”


Visit (suggest a resource where the press can get more info: either your own protest site, or for more information. Circus Protest is a campaign of CompassionWorks International. For more information or interview, please email:

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