Repairing things isn’t always easy – especially with electricals and electronics!
It’s often hard to get spare parts; there are limited instructions; items aren’t made to last and some are impossible to take apart without breaking them. This isn’t just frustrating, it’s bad for our bank balances and the planet.
So, as well as running community repair events, you might also want to get involved in changing the system that includes so many barriers to repairs being successful. This can be as simple as sharing data about the broken items you see at events.
We are involved in the global movement calling for The Right to Repair. The goal is to ensure that everyone has the right to fix the products they own. It aims to change regulations on how our devices are made in the first place, to make them easy and affordable to repair, as well as to expand our rights after purchase.
After all, if we could use every phone sold this year for 1/3 longer, we would prevent carbon emissions equal to Ireland’s annual emissions.
Here are a number of ways that your group can get involved:
Sign the petition for a real UK Right to Repair
The UK government largely ignored recent recommendations by Parliament to reduce electronic waste through a comprehensive Right to Repair. It’s moving extremely slowly and this is clearly not a priority. Meanwhile, Big Tech and industry are pouring millions into lobbying against the Right to Repair across the world.
Sign the petition calling for a real Right to Repair for everyone in the UK.
Record and share your data from events
Our community data is powerful, revealing the barriers to repair at scale. We’re all joined up in our efforts to share repair data, using the same open standard. So in Wales, you can share with Repair Cafe Wales directly. Everywhere else your group can choose between Restart’s “Fixometer” or The Repair Cafe Foundation’s “Repair Monitor”.
The UK community repair movement came together for the first time at Fixfest UK in 2018 and wrote this open letter calling on UK policymakers, product manufacturers and designers to stand with us for our Right to Repair, by making repair more accessible and affordable, and ensuring that we adopt product standards making products better supported, well documented and easier to repair by design. We’d love your repair group to sign it, and contact your MP to ask for their endorsement.
Join The Big Fix
As part of The Big Fix on Saturday 14 May 2022, community groups around the UK will all run repair events on the same day. Organised by Devon County Council, The Big Fix is a day to promote the work we all do and connect with others around the country. You can get involved by planning your own event for 14 May and get in touch with Jennifer Cooper at Devon County Council to learn more.
Celebrate International Repair Day
On Saturday 15 October 2022 we will celebrate the sixth edition of International Repair Day, a day to promote and celebrate the value of fixing. The theme for 2022’s edition hasn’t been announced yet, but it’s never too early to start planning! You can join the celebration by running or attending an event or spreading the word on social media. Why not run a repair event on the 15th of October?
Join Right to Repair (Europe)
A coalition of European organisations pushing for system change around repair. Calling for good design, fair access and informed consumers. Learn about changes that have come into effect in 2021, but we still need to go further, so find out more, sign up for updates and spread the word. Your group can also join the Campaign.
Local Climate Emergency Actions
Consider getting involved in your locality’s climate boards, groups, marches and events. Repair has an integral part to play in addressing the climate emergency, especially as electronic waste is the fastest growing waste stream globally. Chat with existing community repair groups for ideas on how to get involved.