March 13, 2013: The New Roads Student Task Force Workshop held a mock human rights violation event on their campus, inspired from an idea discussed at the STF Winter Leader’s Meeting. In an effort to educate their campus about human rights, STF members selected students from various groups on campus to be a part of their activity.
Campus security guards pulled one pre-selected student from each classroom and put them in the school’s batting cages for all to see. The students’ personal belongings were thrown to the floor and the guards searched the students in front of the whole school during their weekly outdoor Town Hall announcements. The general student body was told to ignore what was happening in the batting cage and listen to the announcements, and most turned away from the caged students. The bulletins carried on as usual, however, the last announcement was from the director of the school saying this search would become a routine procedure and everyone on campus should expect to be treated like those in the batting cage. The students became enraged at the news, however few students objected or stood up for the rights of those in the cage.
During the following workshop period, STF members debriefed each classroom. Some students said they didn’t speak out because they were afraid about being the only one to protest and others said they didn’t know they had the right to speak up. The STF Workshop students felt they learned a lot by hosting this event and think it was a great way to educate their campus about their rights.