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Youth Manifesto Calls on Governments to #ENDviolence in Schools
LONDON, 22 January 2019 – Young people from around the world will call on governments to end violence in and around schools at the Education World Forum this week.
Representing children and young people from around the globe, Khuthadzo Silima and Jonathan Franca, 18-year-old youth activists from South Africa and the USA, will present a manifesto to government ministers at the high-level event in London, detailing what children and young people need to feel safe in and around school.
“The manifesto represents the voices of millions of children and young people who face violence at school every day,” said Silima ahead of the event. “The message we want to get across is clear, adults must listen to us and take the issue of school violence seriously.”
The #ENDviolence Youth Manifesto was drafted last month by more than 100 children and young people from around the world, including Silima and Franca. It also drew on a recent UNICEF poll of young people, which received more than 1 million responses from over 160 countries, and suggestions from a series of student-led #ENDviolence Youth Talks held around the world.
The manifesto calls for action in the following areas:
• A demand for parents, guardians, schools, policymakers, and communities to take students seriously; to establish clear rules; to make laws restricting weapons; to ensure safety to and from school; to provide secure school facilities; to train teachers and counsellors; and to teach consent and respond to sexual violence.
• A commitment from students to be kind, to report violence, and to take action themselves.
• Diversity and tolerance in schools, regardless of culture, gender, identity, disability, sexual orientation, nationality, race, ethnicity, migration status, and religion; and protection for all students – those who experience violence and those who engage in violent behaviour.
The #ENDviolence Youth Manifesto is part of a collective effort to end violence in and around schools, called Safe to Learn, led by organisations including UNICEF, the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), UNESCO, the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children and UNGEI.
Access more information about #SafetoLearn here.