How To Pass a Resolution for Peace with Iran

 Thanks so much for helping us get cities all over the country to pass resolutions for diplomacy, not war, with Iran.
You can:

  1. Submit a resolution to your City Council (Samples here!)
  2. Ask your Mayor to issue a proclamation 
  3. Get signatures of support from locally elected officials
  4. Put the resolution on the ballot for a vote
  5. And more! It is up to you & how your city functions! Read our tips below...

Watch the Youtube of CODEPINK DC in action as they meet with DC Mayor Fenty about Cities for Peace with Iran (ends with a hug and a photo opp!)

Oakland, CA just passed a resolution against the US using force against Iran! For inspiration on taking this on in your own community:
  1. Read our report back & view pics!
  2. Read the article by the Oakland Tribune
  3. Read the resolution text from Oakland + other successful sample City Council peace resolutions


­No matter which way you go, here are some tips for moving forward:

[sample letter]

Dear Elected Officials,

With the war in Iraq raging-consuming so many of our young people's lives and our communities' financial resources, we see how difficult it is to get out of a war once it has started. This is why we are determined to stop the next war before it starts.

In the case of Iran, some national leaders have been using unsubstantiated and/or exaggerated claims about Iran's interference in Iraq and its nuclear program to advocate a military attack against Iran. Such an attack would be disastrous for the people of Iran, our soldiers in Iraq and the Middle East as a whole. It could also cause a devastating disruption of oil supplies and rob our community of precious resources needed to address local needs.

For this reason, we urge you to pass a resolution calling for diplomacy, not war, with Iran. Such resolutions are now being passed all over the country to show our leaders in Washington DC that the people of this nation are determined to begin resolving our conflicts with other nations through negotiations and diplomacy, not war.

We will follow up with you to see about your willingness to introduce a resolution similar to the one attached. We thank you in advance for your support. You can contact us at the following email or phone: xx.


1. Gather a Coalition of Local Organizations to Support the Effort

Put together a letter signed by various community groups and leaders calling on your city officials to pass a resolution for Diplomacy Not War With Iran.

Co-signers can be peace and justice groups, faith-based leaders, students and youth organizations, sympathetic business/union groups, groups that work on issues such as poverty, immigrant rights, racial justice.

To find more groups, go to the website of United for Peace and Justice to check for local peace groups in your town.



2. Find a Sponsor Among Your Elected Officials

  • Check to see if your city has already passed a similar resolution, such as a resolution against the war in Iraq (see If so, check who introduced and supported that resolution and if they are still in office, go back to those same people to see if they will sponsor this resolution.

  • If you don't have an obvious sponsor, ask around to see who is the most progressive, global-minded, peace-loving person in your city government and approach that person. It could be a city council member, your mayor or perhaps a staffperson who could help you find the right sponsor.

  • It's important to try to find a sponsor who is really cares about peace in the Middle East and won't just drop the ball. It's also important to have a strategy session with that person (or their aide) to ask advice on what you can do to help ensure passage of the resolution.

  • A word of advice: City officials often use the excuse that this is an international matter and they only deal with local issues. You can counter with arguments such as:

* War, as we see in the case of Iraq, has a direct and negative impact on your city through the soldiers who are asked to fight to the taxdollars drained from government coffers.
* The state's National Guard is now involved in the fighting in the Middle East, making your community more vulnerable in case of a local emergency.
* Other cities all over the country regularly weigh in on international issues. It should be easy for you, as a public official, to advocate diplomacy over war.

3. Gather Public Signatures

  • You may want to spend some time gathering signatures for the resolution from constituents. This will help leverage Council members' support and may help in getting similar language passed by the Council instead of a watered-down version. Ask the members of your coalition to each collect a stack of signatures.

4. Pressure Other Elected Officials

  • One you have a Council Person willing to take the lead, set up a meeting with that person or their aide to secure the support of other council members. (It is often easier to work with aides.)

  • Set up meetings with other Council members. Bring education packet to share with them including talking points, copies of City Council resolution, newspaper articles, costs to your community and signed petitions. Ask the Council person to approve the language in the draft resolution. This process may take a number of days, a fair amount of negotiating and perhaps some compromise on language. Don't get too caught up in the wording details-as long as the spirit of the resolution stays the same.

5. Set Up A Public Education Event or Town Hall Meeting

  • At any point in this process you may want to consider setting up a public event in your city to garner wider support for your initiative, to bring more citizen power into the effort, and to build the movement in your city. If there are forums or teach-ins already planned, such as forums on the Iraq war, you may want to just work with the organizers of those events to get on the speaking docket. Another option is to set up a "town hall meeting" where you have a panel of people presenting the various arguments for (and against) the resolution and a panel of Council Members and citizens listening and asking follow-up questions.

  • Make sure to invite the press!

6. Outreach to the Media

  • A public education event or action is a great opportunity to inform journalists about the campaign. You should also consider holding a press conference featuring City Council Members leading the effort and diverse members of your Coordinating body or coalition.

  • If you have not been able to get a sponsor to carry the resolution forward, you may want to hold a Candle Light Vigil at the home of one of the obstructionist officials or conduct a sit-in at their office.

  • Draft a press release (see sample release) and send it to your local and regional press.

  • If a Resolution passes successfully don't forget to do follow-up media work. Hold a press conference and claim a victory for peace!

  • What to do when a City Council Resolution will not pass (or even get introduced) in your city

    Here are some options:

    * If you have any allied Council members ask them to circulate a general letter in support of your position to other members and other officials in your City Government, including the Mayors office. Any formal expressions you can obtain in favor of your campaign will help our efforts to show the national strength of local movements

    * You can also try different bodies in your city such as University Resolutions, Labor Union local resolutions, Parent and Teacher Associations, or other Civic bodies.

    * If you have a sympathetic Mayor in your city, ask him or her to issue a statement.

Please send Campaign Updates and requests for assistance to Dana Balicki at dana[at] We are tracking the various efforts to get resolutions passed across the country and want to stay in touch with you.

Good luck! And many thanks for your efforts to Stop the Next War Now!

We want to thank Cities for Progress for their help in putting this together.