Youth Against the War - International Schools protest plans

Youth Against the War

Press Release

School Students Gearing up for Walkouts against the War on Wednesday March 5th

Most schools giving support but a number of Youth against the War activists threatened with disciplinary action if they walk out

School students across Northern Ireland are preparing for walkouts from school this Wednesday (5th March) as part of an international day of school strikes against the war in Iraq.

Schools in Belfast, Derry, Lisburn, Newry, Bangor, Omagh, Coleraine and a number of other areas will be affected. The walkouts have been called by Youth Against the War and so far the response to the call has been overwhelming.

Youth Against the War spokesperson, Chris Loughlin, today commented: "Our members have been organising support in their schools and have had a huge response. For example in one school in Newry, St Colmans, 350 turned up for a meeting called by Youth Against the War. There was unanimous support for the walkout call.

"During the last week hundreds of school students have joined Youth Against the War and pledged that they will be taking action on Wednesday. In most cases the schools have been sympathetic and have given some support.

"However there have been a number of exceptions. Some of our members have been called before their principals and threatened with disciplinary action if they walkout. Youth Against the War is demanding that all such threats be withdrawn. School students have a democratic right to protest and it is important that their voice is allowed to be heard against this war for oil."

Wednesday's action will take different forms in different areas. In most cases it will involve lunchtime protests at school gates. In a number of areas, town centre rallies have been organised.

Full details of these will be circulated to the media before Wednesday. A press conference is also planned for Tuesday afternoon at which Youth Against the War spokespersons will explain what is happening and what it is hoped the walkouts will achieve.

Youth Against the War Central Spokesperson

David Semple, Our Lady & St. Patrick’s, Knock                   07745207693

or contact             Gary Mulcahy on 90232962

Co-ordinating Committee & Area spokespersons

Belfast: Billy Lockard, St. Marys CBS.
Lisburn: Deborah Watson, Wallace High School
Bangor: David Semple, Our Lady’s & St, Patrick’s, Knock
Derry: Seamus Reilly, St Columb's College           
Omagh: Daniel Waldron, Omagh Academy
Newry: Jenny Deane, Sacred Heart Grammar
Coleraine: Chris Henry, Dominican College, Portstewart

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