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Pandemic PSAs III

Pandemic PSAs (Creating COVID Campaigns III)

Mon., Mar. 13, 2023 - Sat., Mar. 18, 2023
Take Action Against COVID

We’re producing the COVID-19 public service announcements and campaigns that the Saskatchewan government won’t.

Jump to the Facebook event here. Please share widely among COVID-concerned folks!

Creative, clever, and COVID-concerned folks: please report to the front desk!

Pandemic PSAs is a collaboration between:

• designers
• anyone with ideas about communicating to the public about COVID
• researchers / data compilers

We will be spending a week making our backlog of ideas a reality and refining older still relevant posters for street viewing. And generating new campaigns!

How does it work?

Pop in as you can to the Discussion tab of the Facebook event to discuss, suggest, create, shape, and refine ideas. Share inspiration from other regional campaigns that you’ve seen before.

Use the Event Discussion tab in the event to contribute ideas, text, graphics, visual art, and links to critical research.

Designers and wordsmiths with Take Action Against COVID can help evolve good ideas into refined campaigns.

Our website and social media people will share these widely and make these downloadable and good for easy distribution online.

Why create our own COVID campaigns?

The Saskatchewan government, like many in North America, is deliberately silent about COVID. Not only have they have removed public health measures, they have removed much of our ability to “manage our own risk,” the solution they touted in 2022 when removing universal masking, testing, tracing and isolation requirements.

There is little fanfare or encouragement to get vaccines when they are available, particularly for kids.

Yet our healthcare system is under severe strain with medical staff sick, burnt out and departing. And of course, with no one allowed to speak out about these conditions.

In the midst of this:

  • Public service announcements regarding COVID are nonexistent.
  • There are no campaigns to let us know that COVID is still an urgent threat, or the emerging research that shows that COVID has increasing chances of disabling us with every re-infection.
  • There are no campaigns to ask people to take every precaution to make sure that they don’t get sick with COVID or transmit COVID.
  • There is total silence about Long COVID, even though it will be a disabling event for thousands in our province in the near term future.
  • Public health authorities, under pressure and interference from politicians, even warn against taking measures like masking.
  • Disinformation is creeping into the vaccuum created by our governments’ silence.

And there is almost total silence in the media.

It’s time to end the normalizing of high-plateau COVID death and injury, because Scott Moe and the Saskatchewan government just want to “move on.”

Let’s work together to create some clever and visual campaigns and put public service announcements out there, reminding people of their power to protect themselves and others.

What kinds of campaigns are we doing?

There are, when you boil it down, two kinds of “PSAs” (public service announcements).

One kind is politically critical, that talks about where the blame lies, how incompetent the government is at handling the pandemic, and so on.

Another kind tries to sidestep politicization and inspire people to be COVID-cautious, make them feel good and less alone if they are still COVID-cautious, and encourage people and workplaces in good COVID-safe behaviour and precautions.

Both kinds are encouraged here.

Distribution – how do the campaigns reach an audience?

We have a few social media channels we can distribute these campaigns through, and an advertising budget. Presently we poster these campaigns around Saskatoon (check out our video in the Discussion section). We encourage others to download the posters for free from our website.

On the posters, we make room for QR codes where people can find out more information on our website. Each campaign links back to an information page where sound, peer-reviewed research is compiled and summarized, along with graphics for people to further distribute.

Here are two campaigns that we produced in the “pilot round” of our graphic design jam:

While the posters we’re doing have so far linked back to resource pages on our website, Take Action Against COVID, there’s no reason we can’t design things for other locales, resources, and action pages (like online petitions).

We can also customize past campaigns on request for your locale, as time permits.

Are you ready?

Are you ready? The government may ignore COVID, but let’s make sure that people of Saskatchewan— and in other locales where governments are eager to pretend COVID isn’t real— don’t go sleepwalking after them.

Visit the event on Facebook here