To make our voice heard publicly and collect signatures online, there are sicyrians to create valid petitions for everyone to sign.
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Differences between referendum and petition
The Italian Constitution allows a referendum to be held for each signature collection that reaches or exceeds 500,000 subscriptions, validated by the judges by the Central Office for the referendum (at the Court of Cassation) and admissible under the terms of the law by the Constitutional Court. Referendums are therefore the only “real” tool that we can use to propose changes or to solve a problem at national level.
As an alternative to the referendum, we can use a petition, provided for by article 50 of the Constitution, to be able to voice a problem and bring to light a situation of difficulty for a specific neighborhood, city, province or region, to be presented to the Chamber of Deputies or in the Senate.
Therefore, on a legal level the petition is a good tool to “make one’s voice heard” but it is not as powerful as a referendum, the only true instrument of direct democracy that can block, cancel or modify a national law.
Our advice therefore is to start a signature collection with an online petition on a secure site with an effective and difficult to manipulate counting system, then get started to consider collecting signatures for the referendum as soon as the 400,000 subscriptions, so as not to waste the votes we have already obtained with the online petition.
If the numbers are good we will have to contact a lawyer or a notary (or even more than one) to authenticate the signatures (also supplied digitally with the SPID), getting help by setting up a body to promote the referendum initiative (which will also have to manage fundraising for the management of the entire organizational machine).
How easy it is to guess it is not at all easy to go from a simple online petition to a real full-blown referendum, but if the numbers of the proposal are very good and we care particularly about the cause (especially if shared by other determined people like us) we can assert our word and carry out a referendum.
The best site we can use to launch an online petition is Change.org, a reference point for international petitions but recently also become a very valid tool for launching petitions also on the Italian territory.
To launch an online petition we open the site indicated above, click on Launch a petition, choose the subject of the petition among those proposed (we have everything: from animals to legal justice passing through the environment, health and human rights), we register when requested (we can also use Facebook and Google for quick access to the site) then we choose a title and a cover message for the petition, we add a photo or a video (even already uploaded to YouTube = to give more prominence to our petition then we press on Publish to add it to the platform.
Once the petition has been prepared, we use the buttons Share on Facebook, Tweet your followers, Connect to Gmail The Copy the web address to share the petition anywhere on social networks, on messaging apps and to your e-mail contacts: the more people we reach, the more chance we have of obtaining a successful petition.
Another very interesting site for making online petitions is Firmiamo.it. On this site we can quickly launch an online petition by pressing the button Create a petition, entering a title and providing a cover image and a description of the problem or cause we want to pursue. Once everything is settled, we press on Publish to make it available online.
Also in this case we can quickly share the petition on the social networks we are subscribed to and in the messaging apps, trying to reach as many people as possible. If the problem concerns a small community (city or neighborhood) it is worth sharing the petition on community groups and channels or getting help from people who have many local followers.
Among the sites that we can choose to launch an online petition, BuonaCausa.org stands out. This site is definitely more advanced than those seen so far, given that the simple petition also combines tools such as crowdfunding (online fundraising), personal fundraising and authenticated signature collection so as to be able to carry out projects of social value and quickly get to a referendum or to a bill.
BuonaCausa.org offers a totally free service and managed in maximum transparency by the Treeware Association, which thus provides very valid tools to make your story heard or to involve as many people as possible in the online petition and, if the numbers are good, support the ‘creator of the petition to obtain a true collection of signatures and a referendum.
If we are looking for a very simple site to make online petitions we can use Petizioni.com. Without registering, you can quickly create an online petition by clicking on the top of the menu Create a petition, indicating the name of the petition, the descriptive text of the cause we intend to support, entering the author of the petition and completing the other required fields (advanced options are also available for review and the type of petition to launch).
When ready we can launch the online petition by clicking on Publish the petition, which will be immediately visible on the home page of the site. As already seen for other similar sites, we advise you to share the petition on all social networks and on all the messaging chats in which we participate, so as to make the success of the petition that we have decided to launch more likely.
Using one or more sites seen in this guide we will be able to launch online petitions that are very effective and easy to keep under control, so as to be able to evaluate at a later time whether to activate a real signature collection and proceed with the tools provided by the Italian state to make one’s voice heard and obtain answers or solutions to the most serious problems.
The petition is therefore only the first step on the road to popular involvement, which inevitably passes through a referendum. To help our cause it may be a good idea create a page on Facebook with the same petition as a theme or create a story on social networks and the most famous apps, so as to increase the number of people who interact with the petition.