The birth of the movement
The story of Addiopizzo began in 2004 when a group of friends were about to start their life after graduation. They discussed the possibility of opening a pub in Palermo, but they feared that someone involved with the Mafia would claim for extortion money “pizzo”. This led them to reflect on the fact that you can’t expect business owners to report on extortion crimes, if the environment they live and work in is indifferent to the plague of extortions. Therefore, they decided to change direction by communicating their message of denounce to their fellow citizens. During the night of 28-29 June 2004, the group of friends plastered the city centre of Palermo with more than one hundred stickers that looked like death notices stating this provocative slogan:
“UN INTERO POPOLO CHE PAGA IL PIZZO È UN POPOLO SENZA DIGNITÀ”. (AN ENTIRE POPULATION WHO PAYS PIZZO IS A POPULATION WITHOUT DIGNITY).
From that anonymous action, the Addiopizzo grassroot movement was born with the aim of being spokesperson of a “cultural revolution” against the Mafia.