CREDO Tip: Staying home and safe while enjoying Black Friday this year

Packed packing lots. Crowded stores. Throngs of people lined up in the middle of the night anxiously waiting for doorbuster deals. Black Friday is as much tradition as it is consumer spectacle. 

But with the pandemic raging across the country, we’re unlikely to see this yearly mayhem unfold at malls, big box stores or on the local news — and that’s probably a good thing, as we all do our part to stay safe and healthy while slowing the spread of the virus as much as we individually can.

So how can we enjoy the unofficial start of the holiday shopping season as it kicks off next week? Here are some tips to get gifts for your loved ones and have a safe alternative to the traditional Black Friday this year.

Shop Local (with curbside pickup)

As Donald Trump and Republicans in Congress refuse to pass another round of much-needed stimulus, small businesses are really struggling to stay afloat right now. In fact, 850,000 small businesses have already shut down permanently during the pandemic.

That’s why we recommend supporting local businesses in your area, if you can, instead of mega-corporations or billionaire-backed retailers. You’ll not only directly support your community during this tough time, but you’ll help maintain the character of your neighborhood and probably reduce your carbon footprint at the same time. Check the websites of local business or your favorite search engine or social media platforms to find others you might not know about — they, too, may be running some sales during the holiday season and offer pandemic-safe options like curbside or window pickup.

Support Black-Owned and People of Color-Owned Businesses

Black, brown and Native people have been disproportionately hard hit by the pandemic, and it’s further exacerbating long-standing racial inequities in our economy and health care system. Black-owned businesses in particular are facing incredible challenges right now, and it could only get worse.

In addition to shopping local, seek out Black-owned and people of color-owned businesses for your holiday shopping needs. Some of these businesses may be in your area, but many have online outlets. Here are some resources to buy from Black-owned, Latinx-owned, and Native-owned businesses.

Give to Your Favorite Cause

Instead of partaking directly in consumerism on the biggest shopping day of the year, consider giving back to the causes you care about. Here at CREDO, we’re partial to our allies and grantees who fight for our progressive values, like civil rights, climate justice, economic equality and so much more. You can find the whole list of the organizations we support (and links to their websites) at CREDODonations.com

And while you’re there, you can vote to help us distribute $150,000 between our November grantees Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), the National Low Income Housing Coalition, and The YEARS Project.

Write Letters to Georgia Voters

This year, CREDO members really stepped up to help turn out the vote by joining our friends at Vote Forward to write letters to voters to ensure they made a plan to vote on Nov. 3. But the election season isn’t quite over yet.

As you might know, there are two critical runoff races in Georgia that could determine control of the U.S. Senate next year. Vote Forward is again asking for volunteers to send up to 3 million letters to Georgia voters to encourage them to register to vote, request and return their absentee ballots and turn out to vote for the January 5th runoff elections.

Learn more and sign up to write letters to Georgia voters here.

Binge on Netflix

If shopping isn’t your thing, there’s another great pandemic-safe activity we’ll be doing on Black Friday: Binge watching our favorite shows on Netflix. Whether it’s checking out our recommendations for great political documentaries or your favorite TV shows, Netflix is sure to have something to keep you entertained if you decide not to partake in a Black Friday shopping spree.

In fact, if you sign up for CREDO Mobile today, you’ll get a year of free Netflix on us. Join by bringing your phone over or getting a new one here! Already a CREDO Mobile customer? You can get a year of free Netflix too, just add a loved one to your account! Valid for new and existing Netflix subscribers.