Students at California State University, Chico Take Part in a Day of Silence

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: 04-07-2010

Joe Wills
530-898-4143
K. Chad Disharoon,
University Housing and Food Service 

530-898-6325

Get ready for the campus to be a little quieter. On Friday, April 16, students at California State University, Chico will join students across the nation in a Day of Silence to protest the discrimination, harassment and abuse—in effect the silencing—faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students and their allies in schools.

The Day of Silence, a project of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), will be held during school hours at California State University, Chico. Over 150 participants will be silent on Friday, April 16, wearing stickers and passing out “speaking cards” that read:

“Please understand my reasons for not speaking today. I am participating in the Day of Silence, a national youth movement protesting the silence faced by lesbian,
gay, bisexual and transgender people and their allies in schools. My deliberate silence echoes that silence, which is caused by harassment, prejudice, and
discrimination. I believe that ending the silence is the first step toward fighting these injustices. Think about the voices you are not hearing today. What are you going to do to end the silence?”

The Day of Silence, according to local organizer Krista Yamashita, “is especially relevant to California State University, Chico because all students regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation deserve to come to a campus that is a friendly and safe place.” Yamashita hopes that the event will work towards ending some of the silence and hatred students face. GLSEN’s 2009 National School Climate Survey found that more than nine of 10 lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transsexual students report verbal, sexual or physical harassment at school, and 30 percent report missing at least a day of school in the past month out of fear for their personal safety. The Day of Silence is one way students and their allies are making anti-LGBT bullying, harassment and name-calling unacceptable in America’s high schools, colleges and universities.

About the Day of Silence

The Day of Silence, a project of GLSEN, is a nationwide, student-led event during which hundreds of high schools and colleges protest the oppression of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth. For more information and a complete collection of organizing materials, visit www.dayofsilence.org.

About GLSEN

GLSEN, or the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, is the leading national education organization focused on creating safe schools for all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. Established nationally in 1995, GLSEN envisions a world in which every child learns to respect and accept all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. For more information on educator resources, public policy agenda, student organizing programs or development initiatives, visit www.glsen.org.

For more information, contact Krista Yamashita at 530-898-6325 or kyamashita@mail.csuchico.edu.

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