While National Walkout Day has come and gone, students in Savannah say the fight for common sense gun legislation is far from over.
Some Savannah College of Arts and Design students are planning a local March For Our Lives event on Saturday to protest gun violence. The event is part of national movement "to demand that student's lives and safety become a priority" and to "end gun violence and mass shootings in schools."
“We came to this event because it's about time this gun legislation is made,” said march co-organizer Devyn Bauer. “There are students and civilians dying every day because of this issue that is quite fixable and quite easy to fix at that.”
On Saturday, thousands of protesters will take to the streets of their communities in more than 800 sibling marches, including in Savannah, as part of the national campaign. Savannah College of Art and Design is not sponsoring the event.
The march is student-planned and will be student-led, according to co-organizer Kylie Ruffino.
“For me, it definitely started with last year with the fact that people can't go to concerts safely or to church safely,” she said. “There were so many instances of gun violence where a lot of people lost their lives in such an unnatural and terrifying way. It wasn't until tragically what happened in Florida for the next generation to see and recognize that enough is enough. I think this is the tipping point because survivors aren’t backing down. They said we have to make some changes and students are following suit.”
The nationwide protest comes just a week after National Walkout Day when thousands of high school students held a 17-minute walkout on to honor the 17 people killed last month at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.
Organizers hope the event will help to continue to keep the national discussion on reform going.
“I think what our main point is to show lawmakers that this legislation is what we need," Ruffino said. “And it’s not in anyway difficult if both parties work together. If everyone works together, it’s something that is easily achievable."
Participants will meet at 12:30 p.m. in Wright Square and march to Forsyth Park. For more information on the campaign, visit marchforourlives.com