7 Great Back to School and Office Ideas for the Progressive Shopper

It’s that time of year: Back to school — and the office! For some of us, this might be the first time back in 18 months; for others, you’ve been in-person this whole time.

Now is also a great time to spruce up your wardrobe, pick up some necessities, or give a gift to that special student or worker in your life. That’s why we’ve put together a quick shopping list of progressive items you can buy or give, while giving back to the causes you care about.

Stepping up your mask game

We can’t talk about going back to school and to the office without talking about masks. While some right-wing, anti-science governors have backed themselves into a corner about masks — while threatening the health and safety of workers and students — we know that masks have been proven to be one of the best ways to reduce transmission. 

And now that masks have become a part of our daily wardrobe, it’s time to spruce them up a bit! Here are a couple suggestions if you’re looking for a new mask to show off your values:

Raygun masks. Raygun, an Iowa-based apparel company, makes ethical, union-printed, non-sweatshop USA-made masks with clever and fun slogans that many CREDO members would stand behind, like “I believe in Science,” “In Fauci we trust,” “America needs teachers,” and even a mask featuring RBG’s favorite lace collar (it’s technically not the dissent collar!). 

Most masks are made from eco-friendly recycled materials, and Raygun donates a big chunk of their net profits to groups that fight for public education, equality and the environment.

Kids’ masks. Children and parents have a lot of choices when it comes to masks, so we’ll leave it to the experts at Wirecutter who’ve tested kids’ masks for the best fit, filtration and comfort. Check out their reviews here.

ACLU Pocket Constitution & “Know Your Rights” Handbook

Everyone should have access to understand and know their rights at their fingertips. Obviously, as a mobile phone company, we’d suggest using your device to learn more about the Fourth Amendment or what to do when stopped by the police, but sometimes that’s not always feasible.

Enter two great references for everyday use: A pocket Constitution and the ACLU’s “Know Your Rights” Handbook. Armed with one of America’s most important documents and a handbook detailing how to exercise your rights and what to do if they are violated, you’ll feel a little more secure as you venture back out into the world. 

The “Know Your Rights” Handbook is available at the ACLU shop for $20, and the pocket Constitution comes in a pack of 10 for $17.87 (cleverly, the year the Constitution was written), so give out 9 extras as gifts to your friends and family.

March for Our Lives Merch 

As we all know too well, COVID-19 isn’t the only affliction overwhelming our nation; the gun violence epidemic continues to devastate families and take a toll on our communities and schools. Our allies at March for Our Lives are working tirelessly to end gun violence by harnessing the power of young people across the country to fight for sensible gun violence prevention policies that save lives.

Show your support for our partners and help put an end to gun violence by picking up some March for Our Lives student-designed merch, like a #MarchForOurLives “United We Stand” hoodie ($44.99), a “Gun Free Zone” Hat ($19.99), or a “Stop Gun Violence” Tee ($25.99).

EFF’s Sliding Laptop Camera Cover

If you or a loved one will be working from home or attending school remotely, you probably use a personal computer with a webcam to participate in all those Zoom meetings, classes and conference calls. That also means you could be susceptible to webcam hacking. 

So how can you protect yourself? In addition to installing the latest security updates running current anti-malware software, you may also want to consider covering your webcam’s camera when it’s not in use. 

Remember when Mark Zuckerberg popularized the use of tape to cover his webcam? Well, you can take your webcam covers to the next level with a sliding laptop camera cover from the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a longtime CREDO partner and grantee. They’re just $8 from EFF’s online store.

Black Voters Matter Backpack

Going back to school is always a great time to get a new backpack. Our allies at Black Voters Matter offer three great options emblazoned with their simple white logo on a black bag to help you show your support for voting rights and fund their work to stop voter suppression: a one-size-fits-all black backpack ($25), a laptop carry bag ($20) or a drawstring backpack ($15) 

BONUS: You can vote to fund Black Voter Matter this month on CREDO’s donations ballot! CREDO funding will help BVM develop a community-driven agenda for expanded voting rights and progress, plan and strategize on local issues, and provide SMS access and digital support to our partners in our 11 target states. Visit CREDODonations.com to cast your vote.

Sunrise Movement Stickers (and Fanny Pack)

Sometimes it’s the small things that can have a big impact. Take the Sunrise Movement’s logo sticker. No matter where you stick it — your laptop, water bottle, phone case — you’ll be making the statement that you stand for climate justice, a Green New Deal and a fair and just transition to a clean energy economy. 

Available at the Sunrise Movement store for just $1.75. And while you’re there, pre-order the Sunrise fanny pack, coming in December.

CREDO Mobile Phone 

Speaking of phones, at CREDO, we offer the best phones on the nation’s best network. And just by using our phones and services, you can help us contribute more to great nonprofit organizations fighting for climate justice, voting rights and more at no additional cost to you. Head back to school or the office with a new CREDO phone or better yet, bring your existing phone and skip the cost of a new one. Visit our homepage at CREDOmobile.com to shop our latest offers.