Philadelphia students, along with students across the nation, walked out of school on Wednesday and marched against gun violence from the Philadelphia School District Building to City Hall.
This national walkout showed support for the victims of the Parkland, Florida shooting.
The Philadelphia Student Union, Juntos, and other Philadelphia organizations organized a student march following the national #Enough Walkouts. Their goal was to bring the conversation of gun control and school safety to Philadelphia.
“I participated because I wanted to make a change. It’s important because just because it happened in Florida, it could still happen in Philly. Just because it’s not happening in this area doesn’t mean it won’t. I want to try to stop it before it’s too late,” says Jade Fairfax, a student at Bodine High School for International Affairs.
Students gathered at the Philadelphia School District and marched down Broad Street to City Hall.
Leaders from different organizations spoke at City Hall, urging students to use their voice.
The Philadelphia Student Union presented a list of demands they want for Philadelphia schools. Some of those demands include more guidance counselors, better health services, and protection of students with the use of a gun.
Superintendent William R. Hite sent a letter to parents explaining that students would be allowed to walk out of their school for 17 minutes and then return to class without punishment. Some students were concerned that their high schools would punish them with detentions or suspensions for leaving school and attending the march.
Universities like Temple University said punishment for attending the protest would not affect college applications.
“I feel like Philadelphia, we could come together as one, and if we could come together as one like right now we should be able to come together and fight for more than just gun control. We could fight for a better government and a better system,” says Nadir Jones, a student of Bodine High School for International Affairs.