Walkout Prep Call
Join our prep call on Thursday, September 14 from 7:00–8:00PM ET to learn more about organizing a walkout at your school.Register
North Carolina Student Walkouts on Friday, September 15th at 12:00PM Eastern Time
UNC-Chapel Hill students should not have had to hide in their classrooms for the second time this semester, wondering if their classmates, friends, and teachers would walk out of class alive. We should not have to be afraid of gun violence on our campuses and in our communities and whether a bullet will shatter our futures and fracture our communities.
We’re sick and tired of inaction from the North Carolina Legislature to protect our lives and our ability to actually feel safe in our classrooms and communities. Firearms are already the leading cause of death for children, teens and college-aged students (ages 1 to 25) in the United States—when will ENOUGH be ENOUGH for our legislators.
This session alone, North Carolina passed a dangerous bill that repealed the background check requirement for unlicensed handgun sales. The bill was vetoed by North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper but then overridden by the legislature. Following the passage of this bill gun sales skyrocketed in North Carolina. The Trace reported in July of this year, people bought 119% more guns than in July of 2022 in North Carolina. It has only increased. In June it was 125% more than that month the year before. In May it was 202%. In April it was 283%. Our generation deserves better – North Carolinians deserve better.
Join us in walking out of class this Friday at 12PM ET to show our legislators that we refuse to let them throw our futures away—that we need them to actually take action to protect our lives. We demand that North Carolina reverses its current course and reinstate its permit requirement, expand its domestic violence laws to prohibit abusers from possessing firearms and enact an Extreme Risk law to temporarily prevent someone in crisis from accessing firearms.
We refuse to live through a third lockdown. We deserve better.
JOIN OUR PREP & ACTIVATION CALL ON THURSDAY at 7PM ET to LEARN MORE!
Students Demand Action Leaders and Members, Teachers, School Staff, Parents, Everyone.
Schools across North Carolina.
Know why you are walking out. Here are some reasons.
- Guns are the number one killer for children and teens in North Carolina and America. Our generation has been forced to grow up living in fear of gunfire ringing out in our schools, neighborhoods, shopping malls, and in so many other places across our communities that should be safe.
- UNC-Chapel Hill has had TWO lockdowns this semester—which is not normal. We should not have to fear for our lives while trying to pass our classes.
- In North Carolina, an average of 156 children and teens die by guns every year, of which 32% of these deaths are suicides and 62% are homicides.
- Those numbers are emblematic of a state in dire need of leaders willing to take meaningful action and protect the young lives they’ve sworn to serve.
- Instead of listening to their constituents, Republican politicians are putting the gun lobby over the lives of those at risk of being gunned down in schools.
- To make matters worse, Republican politicians already passed a dangerous bill that repealed the background check requirement for unlicensed handgun sales. The bill was vetoed by North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper but then overridden by the legislature.
- Passing common sense gun safety laws like Extreme Risk Protective Orders, expanding its domestic violence laws to prohibit abusers from possessing firearms, and reinstating North Carolina’s background check requirement could literally mean the difference between life or death for students. Gun safety is public safety—lawmakers are elected to protect us.
- We won’t accept inaction when it comes to protecting our right to live. Students deserve more than that and if our cries for safety fall on deaf ears, you won’t stop hearing from us. We’ll keep testifying, we’ll keep marching, and we’ll certainly keep voting to remove anti-gun safety politicians from office.
- We are walking out of our schools again at home to make sure lawmakers know that we need gun safety at all levels. We know this work takes all of us and that’s why we are continuing to fight to make sure when we walk into school we are guaranteed to walk out.
- CALL TO ACTION: It’s going to take all of us to make gun laws safer in North Carolina, and across the country. We’re Fed Up with gun violence and we’re going to do something about it.
- Select a trusted teacher or counselor to talk to about why walking out is important to you.
- Ask your administration to support your advocacy efforts.
- Your walkout isn’t targeted against the school administration. Your first priority is to work with them.
2. Publicize and recruit students to participate.
- Create posters, post on social media and spread the news by word of mouth.
- Use social media to connect with your classmates about the walkout. DM people, contact other school clubs, contact students at other schools.
- Create a list of groups in your school, identify leaders in these groups and ask them to join the group planning your walkout. This will help build support among a diverse set of your peers.
- Student Government – they can get the word out and build support.
- Cultural Student Associations (i.e. Black Student Unions)—key to ensuring that all communities feel represented in your action and the messaging around it.
- Student organizations related to gun violence—they’ve been doing the organizing work for a while and can often connect you to speakers and help tailor calls to action.
Come learn more about how to prepare for your walkout and ask any questions you have.
4. At your walkout
Stop whatever you’re doing and simply walk out—into the hallway, out of your school building, whatever feels right to you.
- You can circle your school holding hands
- You can stage your walkout in your school’s hallway
- You can hold a lie-in on school grounds
- Get creative — or any other action that makes sense for you and your community.
- Wear orange to show solidarity. Orange is the color of the gun violence prevention (GVP) movement.
- Encourage people to make signs potential language includes:
- ENOUGHGun Violence is the Leading Cause of Death for American Children & TeensProtect Children Not Guns I want to read books not eulogies I should be worried about my SATs – NOT MY LIFE Never againDon’t shoot Ni uno más. Let this be the last mass shooting generationWhen will enough be enough?If not now, when?Don’t be silent, end gun violenceDon’t Look AwayWe Deserve More than Thoughts and Prayers
- Include this CALL TO ACTION: It’s going to take all of us to make gun laws safer in North Carolina, and across the country. We’re Fed Up with gun violence and we’re going to do something about it.
Have conversations with peers and trusted adults to help determine best practices that take into account the safety of all students. If walking outside is not a safe option then consider walking-out into hallways, congregate in your school gym, or simply stand up in your classroom for an allotted amount of time.
6. Know your rights.
Before your walkout
- If you have time, organize a team at your school to help you with details—give them specific roles (i.e. media coordinator/volunteer coordinator/ advertisement/etc.) Include all grades in the organization of walkout to represent solidarity within the school
- Create a Walkout Plan
- Decide where you are walking out: hallway, athletic field, etc. Think about creating a safe and accessible route for students
- Submit your walkout to the Students Demand Action event form
- Create an advertising plan & act on it
- Social Media: Instagram,TikTok, Snapchat, Twitter
- Personal Instagram stories and snapchat
- Word of mouth
- Encourage people to wear orange clothing
- Media Outreach
- Contact the journalism and yearbook club/class
- Contact any local news stations to cover the event
- Recruit volunteers to help with poster making, ribbon cutting, ushering people to walkout site, designated photographer and videographer/someone to livestream on social media
- Confirm the items you need (posters, megaphone, etc)
- Make sure everyone is bringing what they’re responsible for and doing their specific jobs
- Optional: make orange ribbons
- Optional: make posters
- Optional: prepare speeches
- Educate students about their rights
On the day of the walkout
- Get to school early to go over plan/hand out ribbons and posters
- Leave class slightly earlier to ensure things are prepared
- Speak passionately
- Celebrate that you made an impact
- Share the Call to Action
- Post your walkout on social media & tag us:
- Twitter: @StudentsDemand
- Instagram: @StudentsDemand
- TikTok: @studentsdemand
- Text: STUDENTS to 644-33 to get involved
Share on Social Media
Enough is enough. We deserve better than constantly fearing for our lives on our campuses. We’re walking out of schools across North Carolina this Friday to demand better. Text WALKOUT to 644-33 to join us.
Register Your Walkout
The Students Demand Action team can help support your event and your recruitment efforts. Please complete this form with the details for your event and someone from our team will be in touch with next steps on event approval and some tips on how to boost attendance and make the most of your event.