In 2004 in Palermo, a group of young men founded Comitato Addiopizzo, a nonpartisan, voluntary movement of merchants and consumers who en masse refuse to pay the “pizzo,” or protection money, to the Mafia. Following the philosophy that “A people that pays the pizzo is a people without dignity,” the cultural movement has swept the city and beyond.
Young people, and now older too, refuse to patronize restaurants, bars, and other merchants who don’t display a sign that says “Addiopizzo.” Palermitani realize that banding together is powerful, and as a result, things have changed dramatically. This store pictured sells “pizzo-free” products.
This weekend in Palermo they held the 12th additon of Festa Addiopizzo–a festival celebrating the merchants, artists, professionals, and consumers who support a world free of the pizzo.