Collecting autographs becomes a political statement when they're attached to a petition. As one of the most powerful grassroots movements, petitions can bring together thousands of individuals who are devoted to a change or cause.

Identify the best person or group of people to receive your petition. Just who that is will depend on what you are petitioning to accomplish. For example, if it's to halt a business practice, send your petition to the firm's CEO or legal team.

Write a petition with a clearly defined message. See 374 Sharpen the Focus of an Organization.

Make copies of the petition and give them to as many supporters as possible to get signatures. Get clipboards and head for the grocery store. Make sure your signers include an address and/or a phone number. If you're trying to fight a local problem, the addresses will probably have to be in that jurisdiction. Depending on the scope of the problem and the petition, you may need to gather a required number of signatures. to find out, contact a lawyer, or a national organization petitioning a similar cause.

Get the word out in conjunction with petitioning. Your group can do that through the Internet, the media, posters, phone calls and word of mouth. See 372 Publicize an Event.

Deliver the completed forms and signatures to the appropriate person or organization.