RI students lead silent protest to promote Safe Schools Act

About 100 students led a silent protest inside the Rhode Island State House Wednesday, June 13, 2018, in an effort to get the attention of lawmakers to vote on the Safe Schools Act. (WJAR)

About 100 students led a silent protest inside the Rhode Island State House Wednesday in an effort to get the attention of lawmakers to vote on the Safe Schools Act.

As roll call began, the students, who were wearing T-shirts with targets on their backs, all faced the wall as they held their hands behind their heads to symbolize the words, “Don’t shoot.”

If approved, the Safe Schools Act would eliminate a Rhode Island loophole that allows concealed carry permit into any school kindergarten to grade 12, without notification to the school.

“Their hands are up in a don’t shoot position. They’re speaking out in a silent way, I guess, about the lack of inaction and about their frustration and their fear around being students in hostile learning environments right now,” Kat Kerwin of the Rhode Island Coalition Against Gun Violence said.

The students went unacknowledged by lawmakers and left shortly after the session started.

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