The WIMBY Pledge 
History of WIMBY 
Example of WIMBY 
WIMBY Guidelines 

Summary of the Guidelines for Authorized Use of the WIMBY sign and pledge:


1. Visit the persons who were the victims of the bias incident. Explain what the WIMBY campaign is and seek their authorization to do the WIMBY campaign. Do not involve the victims in the actual canvassing. However, their friends can be involved if they subscribe to the WIMBY pledge themselves and are willing to pair up with you and follow the guidelines.

2. Write a description of the incident and fact check it thoroughly. Clear it with the affected persons. Wait a few days or even longer until if there are extremely strong and heated reactions to the event.

3. Begin canvassing door to door, always in a pair (a diverse pair if possible), and never individually. Introduce yourself by saying, ďWe are going door to door to talk about community concern about the recent [brief description of the incident].Ē If the person who answers the door has not heard about this incident, read from or summarize the pre-approved description, but donít distribute it. If the person who answered the door is amenable to talking, ask them if there is anyone else in the household who might wish to learn about why you are going door to door, and if so wait until they arrive.

4. Then explain further: ďWe wanted you to have a copy of the free and noncommercial WIMBY sign and pledge. WIMBY stands for Welcome in My Back Yard, and the WIMBY pledge is something that we would like you to read and consider signing in the privacy of your home. Once you have read the pledge, we would like you to consider putting up the WIMBY sign in your window over the next year, as a personal expression of your concern for the need to speak out against the kind of thing which just happened here in our community. We are not here to collect a signature from you on the WIMBY pledge, or to collect money from you for any cause. We do not keep track of the names of the people we have visited, or even the addresses we have visited. We do not keep track of which households have or have not put up the WIMBY sign, although we do sometimes try to get an idea of how many WIMBY signs were put up in any one area. We do keep track of which households we have been able to speak with in order to ensure we donít visit them a second time. Most importantly, we make no effort to reach every household in a neighborhood. Thus, if one of your neighbors isnít displaying the sign, or if you choose not to display the sign, for all anyone knows you just werenít home when the WIMBY canvassing was done.Ē

5. If they take the sign, donít assume they will sign it. Donít try to talk them into signing it. In fact, if they try to sign it in front of you, suggest that they take the sign inside and discuss it or think about it, that you donít need to be their for that. And thank you for listening! Simple as that. Simple, but it works!


1. Discuss together why you feel having WIMBY materials available would be valuable for your organization and the individuals in the organization. Recognize the entirely voluntary nature of the WIMBY pledge; it is not something that employees or students should be required to read or sign. Just as Alcoholics Anonymous has a Tradition that it has a policy of attraction, not promotion, so should your approach to WIMBY.

2. If you feel making the WIMBY sign or a link on your website to the WIMBY webpage (www.wimby.org) would be valuable, just order signs, or print the 8.5x11 page with the pledge and the sign, or place a link to the WIMBY webpage on your website, or some combination of the above. For classroom use or staff meetings, never ask students or employees to sign the pledge. It should be seen as just informational. in class or make doing it a homework assignment. The best approach is to quietly place a link to the WIMBY page somewhere on your website or informally leave WIMBY signs around. It should be a policy of attraction not promotion!

3. If there is a bias incident of some kind on campus or in the workplace, consult the responsible parties who respond to such incidents (the affirmative action, human resources or other diversity-related offices). Make them aware of your ability to have a WIMBY campaign be one small part of the appropriate set of responses to that incident.

4. If appropriate, contact friends and supporters of the affected person and with their permission, go to step 1 above for neighborhood or community campaign and adapt the response to the realities of the conditions on campus or in your workplace. Simple, but it works!

5. For advanced campaigns, see the example here: www.fhcwimby.org. This involves an organization developing their own WIMBY graphics. However, please don't change the copyrighted WIMBY pledge itself. So for instance, if your university was University of Michigan it might say UMWIMBY and a link would lead to a website at www.umich.edu which would have materials such as the example at the above www.fhc.wimby.org website. Soon www.wimby.org will have a similar capacity.