Press Release

Educators Stand in Solidarity with Students Protesting Gun Violence

Weingarten: ‘Our students have a right to feel safe at school’

For Release:


Oriana Korin

WASHINGTON—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement in response to nationwide student walkouts to protest the gun violence epidemic in America:

“Our country’s students are fighting against school shootings, and I am proud of their fight. They are engaged in what the late Congressman and civil rights activist John Lewis would have called ‘good trouble,’ turning their outrage into action—and their teachers are with them.

“Today in America, guns are the leading killer of young people, so it’s long past time to be silent or throw up our hands. Commonsense gun safety measures work: We must act—and, at the very least, support our kids in their actions—to stop the violence happening on our streets, in our communities, and in the places we’re meant to feel safest, including our schools.

“Thoughts and prayers are important, but we must do far more than that, including demanding action to ban assault weapons, strengthen safe storage laws and background check systems, and implement meaningful mental health interventions that can help stop these horrific tragedies. Enough is enough.”

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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.