GSA Network Blog

Guns and guards in school? Say no!

I just made up a new word. Prisonification (n): The act of making something more like a prison.

Instead of putting resources into supporting counselors and restorative practices in schools, members of Congress and school districts around the country are instead proposing guns and guards as the solution to making schools safer.

Safer... like a prison.

If that doesn't sound like a safe learning environment to you, join the National Week of Action, April 1-5, 2013!

We need common sense discipline where students are sent to the counselor’s office to deal with problems -- NOT to the police station. Putting guards in schools, whether armed or unarmed, will not make us safer.

Instead, this prisonification will just speed up the disproportionate funneling of LGBTQ youth, youth of color and low-income youth into the School-to-Prison Pipeline (STPP). I believe it goes a little something like this (sing along if you know the words):

What You Can Do

The week of April 1-5, 2013 is the National Week of Action to raise LGBTQ and ally youth voices and tell our members of Congress and school administrators that making our schools operate like prisons with guards and guns will not make us safer.

Together with the Advancement Project, Alliance for Educational Justice, the NAACP, the ACLU, and the Youth Justice Coalition, GSAs around the country will be holding actions and doing advocacy to make our voices heard.

Here are actions you can take:

  • Write a letter to your members of Congress, your state legislators and school district officials to let them know guns and guards in schools is not the answer and that counselors and restorative justice are the answer.
  • Collect signatures on a petition at your school and send it to your members of Congress, your state legislators and your school district officials.
  • Hold a rally or a press event at your state house or at your school for youth to share their stories about how they have been impacted by guards and armed guards in school.
  • Write an opinion-editorial for our local newspapers.
  • Write a blog.
  • Make a video about why you oppose guards and guns in schools.

If you would like to participate in the National Week of Action, we would love to hear from you at the GSA Network! Please email me at

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