(c) 2022 The Buy Nothing Project, Inc.
DIVERSITY, ACCESSIBILITY & INCLUSION
We’re committed to building a community where everyone feels safe and a sense of belonging. Your safety is our top priority and we will continue to find ways to help protect and secure your account.
We are inclusive at our core and want the Buy Nothing experience to be as accessible as possible for everyone. You can help with this, too! Please visit our Accessibility & Inclusion Sample Posts
that anyone can share with their community to raise awareness about the diversity of our Buy Nothing communities and how we can each make our Giving and Asking more inclusive.
Communicate Naturally
The Buy Nothing Project is inclusive at its core. All people are welcome in their local Buy Nothing community. We want you to express yourself in all of the ways that come naturally or easily to you and that meet your communication needs. 
It’s fine to use a lot of whole words to tell a story about your offer or request, and it’s fine to use abbreviations or acronyms, or to use any combination of words and images that you’d like.  
Some things to keep in mind when writing a post include: 
  • Some of the people in your community may communicate most easily in another language.
  • Using simple, clear wording might help more people understand your posts and comments.
  • Some people might be of different generations and may not understand certain slang or abbreviations. 
  • Some of the people in your community may process language differently, for instance, by taking language literally. 
  • Some people may be rushed for time and just need to be brief to find a new home for their item. Short posts are welcome in Buy Nothing.
  • Some people may have a story to share along with their gift or request. Long posts and stories about Gives, Asks & Gratitude are welcome in Buy Nothing. 
You can help: 
  • If you see miscommunication or misunderstanding happening between neighbors, you can comment to offer a helpful perspective or clarification. 
  • If you speak multiple languages, you can offer the gift of translation for neighbors who might benefit from that. 
  • If you don’t understand a post and want clarification, please ask for that help in a comment. 
We can all work towards a shared understanding. Google translate is a helpful resource, even if it isn’t perfect. 

We want Buy Nothing to be accessible and inclusive, so that each person can connect with this community and participate fully. Accessibility has a lot of different meanings to different people. Here’s a list that covers some of the things you can think about when you’re posting your Gives, Asks and Gratitude. You might not be able to change some of the things below, but we’ve found it helps if we’re all aware of what accessibility involves, so we can help each other out to make Buy Nothing participation possible for everyone. 

Physical accessibility
  • Let people know in your pick-up/delivery directions if your home isn’t accessible to people who use mobility aids such as wheelchairs, walkers, crutches, etc. You might be able to create an accessible pick-up location that doesn’t involve stairs, for instance. 
  • If your location is close to mass transit, a bike trail, walking trail, etc, let people know - This might make your gift more attractive to people who use transportation other than cars to pick their gifts up. 
  • If you’re willing and able to offer the Gift of Delivery to others, let them know in your post or comments. This is a powerful gift that enables many people to give and receive even if they aren’t able to pick-up or deliver gifts. Not everyone is independently mobile, or feels safe picking gifts up, for a wide variety of reasons. 
Safety
  • If you’re picking up or delivering a gift, prioritize your own safety, so that you feel comfortable with the situation, location, etc. Advocate for yourself if there’s anything you need or want to keep yourself safe. 
  • If you are setting out a gift for contactless pick-up, is it easy to find and clearly labeled? 
  • Let your neighbors know that you’re part of Buy Nothing, and that people will be dropping by to pick up and drop off gifts. This helps protect people from suspicion and possible altercations or involvement with police. 

Visual Accessibility
  • Describe your Gives and Asks with enough detail that people with low vision or blindness will know what you’re offering or requesting. 
  • Attach easy to find and easy to read labels to gifts when you set them out for people to pick up. 

Scent/Allergens
  • If you use scented laundry detergent or dryer sheets, you can put this information into any offers of clothing or bedding. Do you use a lot of scented products in your home which could linger on any items you’re giving?
  • If you have cats, dogs, or other animals whose fur and dander may get on items you’re giving, you can include this information in your Gives and Asks .
  • If your household involves smoke of any substance, you can include this information when you offer items from your home. 
  • If you’re sharing food, list the ingredients
  • If you have health issues or allergies triggered by particular substances, put this into your Ask posts, so people know whether what they’d like to offer is appropriate for you. 

Language Accessibility
  • Using clear language when you describe details of your Give, Ask and Gratitude posts will make your posts more understandable for people who have a different first language. 
  • If you’re confused by another person’s posts or comments, ask for help understanding them!
  • If someone uses a language you’re not familiar with, give Google Translate a try - it’s not perfect, but it’s usually helpful. 
Gender Inclusivity
  • You don’t have to attach a gender description to items that you’re giving away. You can simply describe what you’re offering, for example “crib bedding with a blue and white whale print” or “pink and white bicycle with a step-thru frame” and let people choose for themselves whether they’d like to request your gift. 
These are some ideas to start us off, but please add your own tips and thoughts and bring these tips and ideas to your Buy Nothing community. The more accessible and inclusive we are, the stronger our communities will be.