Springfield high school, college students plan walkout for common-sense gun legislation

Published: Feb. 26, 2018 at 5:54 PM CST
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Students from several schools around Springfield are organizing a walkout, to push for stricter gun laws.

“We really want to let our legislators know that we are fired up, and we are going to be loud and we want to make our schools safer," said Hannah’s Brashers, organizer of the event. "And we want to push our legislators to push common sense gun legislation."

Brashers says she hopes for a large crowd during the walkout, and thinks that students are ready to help make a change.

"I think that the people who would normally be scared to talk out about this issue have felt really emboldened and empowered to come together in this moment in history." said Brashers.

Helping Brashers is Grace Laflin, a student a Kickapoo High School.

"I honestly only thought like ten or twenty of my friends were going to be interested in doing it," said Laflin. "But I did a poll and over 100 students said they would like to participate in a walkout."

Laflin spoke with her school principal about the idea, and says some teachers have been supporting her idea.

"I'm really lucky to have like 3 or 4 teachers at the school who are super supportive and willing to help me out," said Laflin.

Springfield Public Schools heard about the potential walkout this morning, and they say a similar plan was already in the works.

"This is in the tops of people's minds, teachers and students, and so this opportunity is really about continuing that dialogue," said Stephen Hall, with Springfield Public Schools. "We want people to feel free to come forward with their thoughts, that is why a district wide way and time to do that is important."

All three agree that students deserve to have their voices heard.

"We believe students have a lot to bring to this conversation," said Hall. "Their perspective is unique and it is important. Their voices need to be heard."

"We often feel as students, especially at the high school level, that we don't have much of a say in what goes on," said Laflin. "So I think that if we can show the student body at our high school that we can have a voice I think that it will be very positive for students."

The event is called the Springfield Walkout for Our Lives. The students will gather on Friday, March 23rd.

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