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Why are people so silent today? It’s because it’s Day of Silence! Day of Silence promotes awareness of the bullying and harassment those within the LGBT community face at their schools.

How did this holiday start? Who thought of it? What does it stand for? Let’s dive into the history of this holiday and celebrate it here at Days of the Year.

History of Day of Silence

Day of Silence was first organized by a group of students at the University of Virginia. The day was originally for a class project on nonviolent protesting. Over 150 students participated in the first year. A year later, the group took the project nationally, spreading the holiday to over 100 universities.

After overwhelming success, the holiday was handed over to the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network in 2001. They would become the official sponsors of the holiday, bringing in new funding, staff, and volunteers to help lead the event.

Day of Silence brings attention to the hatred, oppression, and prejudice that those within the LGBT community face. Those who participate believe they can spread their message by being silent on this day.

They believe that the laws and attitudes of today’s society should be inclusive to everyone no matter their sexual or gender orientation. As a non-violent, political protest, students in schools across the United States remain silent for the LGBT communities and their allies.

As a student-run event, the GLSE focuses the holiday on fighting the injustices that the community faces. They hope to deter ideas such as hatred and oppression from everyday life. The holiday has since reached out to schools in all 50 states, and more than 10,000 students participate in the event each year.

How to celebrate Day of Silence

If you believe in the project, then on this day, take the day to remain silent. Whether you are part of the LGBT community or are an ally of the community, then remaining silent throughout the day.

This is done to help raise awareness of the prejudices those within the community face. If you’re part of a student organization at your local college, then register with the GLSE to help advocate and show growth for the movement.

Let your teachers and professors know that you’re participating in the event ahead of time and convince them to support your causes. Once the day ends, help keep the conversation going and bring light the struggles people face and advocate for change.