Day of Silence aims to raise awareness for marginalized LGBTQ members


Credit: Allie Nunn

Pictured above are ribbons and stickers designed for students to be able to show support for the LGBTQ community if they don’t want to partake in the Day of Silence. The day is meant to raise awareness for LGBTQ community members without a voice. “We’ll be silent for everyone who doesn’t have an option,” senior Emma Marton said.

Allie Nunn and Isabella Arenas

Wayland High School will be celebrating a Day of Silence on Thursday, April 25. Day of Silence is the GLSEN’s annual day of action in which students are able to spread awareness about the effects of bullying and harassment of students in the LGBTQ community. Thursday morning in the commons, students who are willing to take part in the action will pledge a day-long vow of silence to represent the silencing of LGBTQ students.

In 1966, the University of Virginia organized the first Day of Silence in response to a class assignment. The assignment was based on a non-violent protest and was a way to spread awareness. Around 150 students participated along with 100 other colleges with their student bodies, making GLSEN the official organizational sponsor for the protest since 2001.

Senior Emma Marton has taken part in the event during her high school experience.

“The purpose of Day of Silence is to be silent to give awareness to those in the LGBTQ community who don’t have a voice. We’ll be silent for everyone who doesn’t have an option,” Marton said.

Every year, more than 10,000 students register and participate in Day of Silence.

Students have an option in whether they would like to participate in the event.

“For this year and future years, if people ever wanted to participate, you can come down to the commons, and we’ll have a little card for you,” Marton said. “If you just want to show your support but you don’t want to be silent, there will be ribbons or stickers you can wear to show your support for the day.”

This tradition of celebrating the Day of Silence has been running for several years at WHS. Many students have taken part in the event.

Senior Leon Rader has participated along with other classmates previous years.

“I really like [the Day of Silence] because it spreads awareness of bullying and discrimination,” Rader said. “Even though it’s only a small thing, being silent for an entire day is still eye-opening.”