Presented by Congressman Lewis – not passed as of yet

Supporting the goals and ideals of ‘‘National Nonviolence Week’’ to raise
awareness of youth violence in the United States.
DECEMBER 17, 2010
Mr. LEWIS of Georgia submitted the following resolution; which was referred
to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform
Supporting the goals and ideals of ‘‘National Nonviolence
Week’’ to raise awareness of youth violence in the United
Whereas the Sojourn to the Past program annually takes
high school students to the historic locations of the civil
rights movement, teaching them how nonviolence protest
mitigated discrimination, violence, hatred, bigotry, and
inequity in schools and communities;
Whereas the goal of the Sojourn to the Past program, created
by Jeff Steinberg, is to inspire students to become
civic leaders with a duty and ability to unite people in
their communities in equality and justice, through knowledge,
understanding, and compassion;
Whereas, in 2009, a small group of Youngstown, Ohio, high
school students who experienced Sojourn to the Past, a
10-day journey to the civil rights sites in the Southern
United States, created activities for a nonviolence week
for the city high schools;
Whereas Mrs. Penny Wells, a social studies teacher in the
Youngstown, Ohio, school district aligned the Sojourn to
the Past program to Ohio State standards and the school
district pacing guides;
Whereas the Sojourn to the Past program offers an independent
study program credit for Sojourn to the Past
participants in support of Mrs. Wells’ effort;
Whereas, at the request of school superintendent Dr. Wendy
Webb, the Youngstown Sojourn students implemented
Nonviolence Week in all the Youngstown schools during
the first week of October 2009;
Whereas these Youngstown Sojourn students received a declaration
from Mayor Jay Williams declaring the first
week in October 2009 as Nonviolence Week;
Whereas the 2010 Youngstown Sojourn to the Past students
successfully petitioned the Youngstown School Board, the
Youngstown City Council, and the Youngstown State
University trustees to declare the first week in October
each year to be Nonviolence Week;
Whereas the Sojourn to the Past program has afforded participating
students an experience that is far reaching and
life changing and serves as a catalyst for their becoming
activists in applying nonviolence principles throughout
their lives;
Whereas 48 percent of schools in the United States reported
at least one student threat of physical attack per year;
Whereas most victims of school violence are first exposed as
early as middle school;
Whereas hostility toward homosexuality and gender nonconformity
continues to plague gay, lesbian, bisexual, and
transgender youth and adults in United States schools;
Whereas, according to the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention (CDC), youth violence results in considerable
physical, social, and economic consequences;
Whereas, according to the CDC, over 656,000 young people
were treated for physical assaults in United States emergency
rooms in 2008;
Whereas, according to the CDC, roughly 20 percent of high
school students reported being bullied and subjected to
threatening language at school in 2009;
Whereas the United States child homicide rate, for children
less than 15 years of age, is 5 times greater than the
combined rate of 25 other industrialized countries; and
Whereas the principle of nonviolence has been a core philosophy
of many successful social change movements: Now,
therefore, be it
Resolved, That the House of Representatives
(1) supports the goals and ideals of ‘‘National Nonviolence Week’’
to raise awareness of youth violence in the United States; and
(2) encourages the people of the United States, State and local
officials, middle schools and high schools, law enforcement agencies,
and other interested groups to observe National Nonviolence Week
with appropriate programs and activities that pro
mote awareness and prevention of youth violence.