August 2013

NONVIOLENCE WEEK IN OHIO
On July 11, 2013 Governor Kasich signed Senate Bill Number 38 creating Nonviolence Week in Ohio.

This year, Nonviolence Week is October 6th through 12th.

This bill was proposed by Mahoning Valley Sojourn to the Past students, which is a small group of Youngstown high school students, who in 2009, after experiencing a life changing journey called Sojourn to the Past, decided to have a Nonviolence Week in the Youngstown City Schools. In 2010, Mayor Jay Williams declared the first week in October to be Nonviolence Week in the city. In 2011, the Sojourn students petitioned the Youngstown City Council, the Youngstown school board and the Youngstown State University trustees asking each of them to pass a resolution making the first week in October Nonviolence Week permanently, and they all did. The Mahoning County commissioners passed a similar resolution in the fall of 2012.

In January, 2013 at the request of Sojourn students, Senator Joe Schiavoni introduced the Nonviolence Week bill in the Ohio Senate. In May, two Sojourn students testified for the bill before the Ohio House of Representatives committee, and the House of Representatives passed the bill in June, sending it on to the governor for his signature. Sojourn students were in Columbus on June 11th to witness Governor Kasich signing the bill into law.

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We urge you celebrate Nonviolence Week in your community, your church or school.
In Youngstown we are celebrating Nonviolence Week by:
• The Third Annual Nonviolence Parade/Rally in downtown Youngstown on Sunday, October 6th;
• Displaying the six principles of Nonviolence in all of the Youngstown schools;
• Hanging posters of pictures of individuals who have championed nonviolence with a quote (Gandhi, Congressman John Lewis);
• Making PA announcements each day of Nonviolence Week based on the Six Principles of Nonviolence of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.;
• Conducting nonviolence workshops with students encouraging them to think differently and to watch the hateful language they use;
• Organizing a nonviolence art contest for school students.
Recognizing the need for nonviolence in Ohio, we encourage you to join with us in planning nonviolence activities in our communities. Contact us if we can be of help, or if you have questions. (Penny Wells – pennywwells@sbcglobal.net) Also, please let us know any events you are planning to promote Nonviolence Week in Ohio. We would like to share with others where and how this week is being celebrated in Ohio.

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