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How a petition works

When people join together and raise their voices about an issue they care about, the message is hard to ignore.

Starting a petition on Change.org helps you quickly build awareness for your cause, mobilize supporters, and propose a solution directly to the person who can make the change.

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  • Celebrate victory icon

    Every hour

    petitions achieve victory

  • World icon

    130 million

    supporters worldwide

  • Megaphone icon

    400 mentions

    by media every day

1

A campaign begins

Anyone can start a petition for free – whether you're a public figure, a representative for an organization, or just someone who sees something that needs to change.

Sara petitioned Congress to pass the ABLE Act – a bill allowing people with disabilities to open tax-free savings accounts. Leaders from Congress responded and the bill became a law.

Sara, a young petition starter with Down syndrome, petitions Congress to pass the ABLE Act.

Malala’s advocacy for the education of women in Pakistan grew into an international movement after she started a petition on Change.org.

Malala Yousafzai

Nobel Prize laureate

Malala’s advocacy for the education of women in Pakistan grew into an international movement after she started a petition on Change.org.

Malala Yousafzai

Nobel Prize laureate

Malala’s advocacy for the education of women in Pakistan grew into an international movement after she started a petition on Change.org.

Malala Yousafzai

Nobel Prize laureate

2

Support grows

Momentum builds when the petition is shared with friends, family, and the Change.org community.

16,000 people signed a petition asking the French Senate to approve a law forbidding the use of Bisphenol A (BPA) in food packaging.

A group of supporters holding a sign in front of the French Senate.
3

The media takes notice

Media coverage helps bring the petition to new audiences and encourages a decision maker response.

CBC, the largest Canadian news broadcaster, and numerous other media outlets feature Merna’s petition to add notable women to Canadian bank notes.

Media covering a group of supporters rallying in from of the Canadian government.

President Obama responds to a petition – “Thank you for signing a Change.org petition...and raising your voices. We hope you'll continue to participate.”

Barack Obama

President, USA

President Obama responds to a petition – “Thank you for signing a Change.org petition...and raising your voices. We hope you'll continue to participate.”

Barack Obama

President, USA

President Obama responds to a petition – “Thank you for signing a Change.org petition...and raising your voices. We hope you'll continue to participate.”

Barack Obama

President, USA

4

Decision makers respond

Addressing a petition to a decision maker provides an opportunity to work directly with the person who can help find a solution.

The French Minister of National Education, Higher Education and Research responds to a petition calling for new resources and training in schools to prevent bullying.

The French Minister of National Education, Higher Education and Research speaking to a crowd.
5

The goal is reached

Once a solution is agreed upon and the campaign has reached its goal, the petition is declared a victory.

Consuelo, a mother who was being charged extra fees for her child with disabilities to attend private school, reached her goal when the Ministry of Justice adopted a statute to prevent schools from charging extra fees.

Consuelo and a crowd of people celebrating after reaching their goal.

How to start a petition

Write a title

The title is the first thing people will see about your petition. It should grab their attention and focus on the solution you'd like them to support.

Examples

Choose a decision maker

The decision maker is the person, organization, or group that can directly implement the solution your petition is trying to achieve.

Examples

Explain the problem

The story is the description of what your petition is about. It's a chance to explain the problem you want to solve and how this change will impact you, your family, or your community.

Examples

Add a photo or video

Along with the title, photos and videos are the first thing people will see about your petition. It should grab their attention and capture the emotion of the story you want to tell.

Examples

Frequently asked questions

Is it free to start a petition?

Yes! Everyone starting a petition has access to the same online resources and tools.

Who can start a petition?

Any person, organization, or company can start a petition.

Do online petitions really work?

When you start or sign a petition, you’re helping build a community of people who support an issue you care about. The bigger that community gets, the more likely it is to get the attention of the people or groups who can influence its success. Take a look at some of the successful campaigns from the Change.org community.

How does a petition win?

Petitions are successful when the person who started the petition and the decision maker come to an agreement. We see petitions win at all levels of support, from 30 to 30,000 signatures. There is no magic number, but more support means a louder voice and the decision maker will feel more compelled to respond.

Why should I use Change.org?

We give you the tools you need to run a campaign such as an active community, access to prominent decision makers, and the ability to raise funds. For most people, it takes less than 10 minutes to publish a petition––it’s 4 easy steps. After publishing, we provide a petition guide and video resources, access to our dedicated campaigns staff, and useful insights and data about the petition.

Is Change.org affiliated with a political party?

No, we are not affiliated with any political party. As a B-Corporation with a mission to serve the public interest, Change.org is an open platform with room for a wide range of perspectives so people everywhere can take action on the issues they care about.

How do I know if the signatures are real?

Fake signatures, or spam, are almost always caught by our 24-hour monitoring system before they appear on the site. You can feel confident that each signature is legitimate and a true act of support for your cause.