Are you ready for the silence?
This Friday, April 17th marks the 20th annual Day of Silence, a project of the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN).
Read below to find everything you need to know about Day of Silence, including information about different Nights of Noise and other Break the Silence events happening around Wisconsin.
If you have any questions about Day of Silence, please don’t hesitate to call the GSAFE office at (608)661-4141 or email Tim Michael at email@example.com.
If your school is organizing events for Day of Silence, please feel free to upload photos to GSAFE’s Facebook page or tweet them at @gsafewi and we will retweet them to our followers!
Good luck, and thanks for everything you do to create safer and more just schools for LGBTQ+ youth and all students!
History of the Day of Silence
The Day of Silence began in 1996 at University of Virginia, but quickly became a national student-led movement. High school and middle school students have since become actively involved in The Day of Silence, making the day a collective, inclusive endeavor.
Schools and organizations across the country organize various activities and events on the national Day of Silence to bring awareness to LGBT bullying and harassment and to end the silence of those who experience and witness anti-LGBT bullying. There is no one template for how to organize a successful Day of Silence, and over the years, students have come up with original, creative ways to speak out against the silencing effect of anti-LGBT harassment.
Since 1996, the day of awareness has spread nationwide and is currently the largest student-organized action pushing for safer schools. Whether by taking a simple vow of silence or organizing a community-wide event for “Breaking the Silence,” let us continue the mission the students at the University of Virginia set out to do 20 years ago. As a collective community of students, parents, teachers, and advisors, we will continue to strive for a world where our schools are safe for all individuals, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.
Resources for the Day of Silence
The Day of Silence website, www.dayofsilence.org,
has a number of useful resources
for students and advisors hoping to organize their own community or school wide action. For suggestions on how to successfully plan and implement a Day of Silence event, click here
Students, parents, and teachers often have concerns regarding legal rights and under what conditions a vow of silence is or is not protected by the constitution. Lambda Legal has plenty of information to answer any and all questions regarding students legal rights when taking a vow of silence. Click here
to get answers and legal advice directly from Lambda Legal, or here
to get a summary of students’ rights from the Day of Silence website.
GSAFE also has a FAQ page on their website for students, parents, and advisors who have questions about planning, organizing, and running their own Day of Silence. Click here
to view the questions and answers.
Day of Silence Events around Wisconsin
Many different community-based organizations and schools are organizing events to commemorate Day of Silence this year.
Read below to find out about events happening in Green Bay, Menomonie, Milwaukee, and Madison.
If you know of an event that is happening that is not on this list, email Tim at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be sure to spread the word about it.
Q2 will be hosting a Night of Noise Dance at the Lookout (UWEC Hilltop Center) in Eau Claire! The event will run from 8PM to 11PM on Friday, April 17th.
This dance is open to high school-aged youth in the Chippewa Valley. For more information contact Alison Harder at email@example.com or visit Q2’s Facebook page here
LGBT Partnership will once again be holding their Night of Noise on Friday, April 17th from 7PM to 9PM.
There will be music, dancing, an open mic to share your Day of Silence stories, community resources, and food. There will also be buses to transport youth from the Fox Valley area. If you would like more information or are interested in getting involved, please contact Deanna Tappy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Night of Noise will be at the Harmony Cafe in Green Bay, 1660 W. Mason Street.
GSAFE is teaming up with the organizers of Teen Pride Arts and the UW-Madison ArtWrite Collective to host an evening of art, music, poetry, and food. This event will give students who participated in Day of Silence an opportunity to come together and share their experiences through an open mic forum, zine making, videos, poetry writing, and more.
Teen Pride Arts: Break the Silence will take place in the Loft of the Goodman Community Center on Friday, April 17th from 7PM to 9PM.
Read more about it on the Facebook event here.
The SPASH GSA will be making some noise at the end of the Day of Silence…by bowling! Join the SPASH GSA at Skipp’s Bowling Center at the end of the school day on Friday.
Skipp’s is located at 2300 Strongs Ave. in Stevens Point.
If you know of other Day of Silence events happening in Wisconsin this year, please email Tim at email@example.com.