Portland-area students join nationwide walkout to protest gun vi - KPTV - FOX 12

Portland-area students join nationwide walkout to protest gun violence

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Students from David Douglas High School participating in the nationwide walkout (AIR 12/KPTV) Students from David Douglas High School participating in the nationwide walkout (AIR 12/KPTV)
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Students across the Portland metro area are participating in a nationwide walkout Friday morning to protest gun violence.

Friday marks the 19th anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre where 12 students and one teacher were shot and killed.

Hundreds of students assembled in front of City Hall around 10:30 a.m. where several of them spoke out against gun violence.

Many students held signs that said things like "Fear has no place in school," and put the blame for blood of students killed in mass shootings on the NRA.

"And 19 years later, there's still school shootings and mass shootings happening in the United State, there was a school shooting today," said Gabrielle Barnes, student at Lincoln High School. "Our work here isn't done right, and if the adults aren't making a change then we'll do it ourselves."

Mayor Ted Wheeler spoke to students at City Hall, offering words of encouragement.

"The one piece of advice, don't let this be a moment. Let this be the beginning of an era, keep the heat on," said Mayor Wheeler.

Students stayed at City Hall for over an hour and then walked to Pioneer Square. A few students returned to their classrooms. However, some told FOX 12 they were boarding buses to head to Salem for another rally.

Another event was held at Pure Space PDX where students participated in a teach-in event and learned how to create local and national change.

Portland Public Schools officials said in a letter sent home to families that if students walk off school premises, they will receive an unexcused absence.

While teachers are not allowed to participate in the walkout, the district says they may accompany students as a safety precaution.

PPS will have a hotline set up for parents or anyone with concerns that will be fully staffed on Friday. The number is 503-916-6600.

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