This Friday, April 19th, is the GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network) Day of Silence. Students will participate in GLSEN’s 18th annual Day of Silence, which is a student-led day of action to raise awareness about anti-LGBT bullying, harassment, and discrimination. The student participants and their supporters believe that LGBT students deserve to go to school in a safe and respectful environment.
The GLSEN Day of Silence was founded in 1996, and has become the largest single student-led action towards creating safer schools for all, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. It started with the first Day of Silence at the University of Virginia in 1996, and moved to the organizing efforts of over 8,000 middle schools, high schools, colleges and universities across the country.
The idea behind the Day of Silence is to be silent against bullying, harassment, and discrimination. As the GLSEN website informs us, “By taking a vow of silence, you’re making a powerful statement about the important issue of anti-LGBT bullying, and when you organize others to join you that message becomes stronger. “
Students have the right to be silent before and after school and between class breaks. They may have to break their silence during class time if called upon by a teacher to speak. It’s best for students to discuss the Day of Silence event with their instructors ahead of time that way teachers will be informed and students won’t have to break their silence.
The GLSEN website has all of the information on this incredibly important day including resources, activities, social media opportunities, postings, and more. Check out GLSEN’s Day of Silence website at http://www.dayofsilence.org/. Find out how to post Selfies (personal pictures of yourself stating your beliefs against discrimination), see how to register for the Day of Silence, read more about April 19th in general and much more.