Students, teachers, and faculty members at schools across America are participating in a National School Walkout to take a bold stand against gun violence.
After a mass shooting killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on Feb. 14, grieving and distraught teens, families, and citizens began organizing protests to demand Congress take stricter action on gun control laws in the country.
On March 14 — the one-month anniversary of the deadly Florida shooting — people of all ages at educational institutions across the country will participate in a National School Walkout. The protest will start at 10 a.m. local time and last for 17 minutes in honor of the 17 lives of those killed in the tragic shooting.
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At 10 a.m. on the east coast, the first protesters left their classrooms to inspire change. Many used social media to give live updates from their protest sites, sharing photographs, video, and their personal reasons for walking out.
One month ago today, we were all changed. #IWillMarch so no child has to lose their innocence like we did. #IWillMarch so my children don’t have to experience what we all went through.#IWillMarch because my generation—the mass shooting generation—has had enough.
— Alex Wind (@al3xw1nd) March 14, 2018
The brave students received massive amounts of support and encouragement from celebrities, activists, parents, and advocates around the world. Many tweeted in solidarity using hashtags like #NationalWalkoutDay, #StudentsStandUp, #NeverAgain, and #Enough.
It's been the honor of the lifetime serving on the National Organizing Committee of @WomensMarchY leading up to today's #ENOUGH #NationalSchoolWalkout. I'm getting chills right now seeing just how bold, beautiful, and brave our generation is. I have no doubt that we will win.
— Ziad Ahmed (@ziadtheactivist) March 14, 2018
Today, 1 month after of the day that changed our lives forever, we will join the school walkout. We will join the walkout for every one of those 17, and for every other victim of gun violence. We will join for those that are still here. We will join for you. #NeverAgain
— Delaney Tarr (@delaneytarr) March 14, 2018
The National School Walkout on Wednesday was planned by a group associated with Women's March organizers called EMPOWER. The Parkland, Florida shooting has also inspired similar protests such as March 24th's March for Our Lives and another National School Walkout on April 20th to mark the 19-year anniversary of the Columbine High School shooting.
Additional reporting by Martha Tesema.