Los Angeles, CA – As tensions between the U.S. and North Korea spark concerns of nuclear war, a South Los Angeles high school has teamed up with a local physicians’ organization to help area youth learn just what is at stake in a nuclear conflict – and how such conflict might be prevented.
On November 4, Alliance Dr. Olga Mohan High School (ADOMHS) and Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles (PSR-LA) will co-host a Youth Disarmament Conference, the first conference ever to be held in Los Angeles aimed at educating and empowering youth about nuclear weapons disarmament.
High school senior Lesly Tobon has worked with her assistant principal, Andrew King over the last few months organizing this exciting event. “The Youth Disarmament Conference will educate and empower youth across Southern California about the ever-present threat of nuclear weapons,” Tobon said. “This conference strives to not only fill the knowledge gap among the youth but also to give them the tools and resources so that they can play a more active role in achieving a world without nuclear weapons.”
Over 150 participants from 20 high schools and 13 colleges in the region will participate in the conference, which includes sessions led by nuclear disarmament experts and a youth advocacy panel. Workshops will address pressing issues, including Trump Administration plans to rebuild the U.S. nuclear arsenal and legislation to limit the President’s ability to unilaterally launch a first nuclear strike. Students will also make paper cranes, a universal symbol of peace, to be presented by ADOMHS representatives in Hiroshima at the U.N. Conference on Disarmament later this month.
“Today’s youth didn’t grow up during the Cold War when there was a greater fear of nuclear war,” said Dr. Robert Dodge, president of PSR-LA. “Yet it is their future most at risk as Congress debates the nation’s financial and moral priorities. We are proud that youth from South L.A. are taking leadership on this critical public health and social justice issue.”
Conference speakers include Daryl Kimball, executive director of the Arms Control Association, Shikego Sasamori, Hiroshima survivor and peace activist, and Dr. Robert Dodge, president of PSR-LA. Additional participating organizations include the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, and the William J. Perry Project.
Governor Jerry Brown said in a statement, “It is heartening to see young people coming forward as leaders in the campaign for nuclear disarmament. There is no great threat to the future of humanity than nuclear war.”
What: Youth Disarmament Conference Los Angeles
When: Saturday, November 4, 2017 from 9 am – 4 pm.
Where: Huffington Center, S. 1324 Normandie Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90006
Visuals: Nuclear disarmament experts with slide and video presentations, students discussing youth advocacy in LA, students folding paper cranes, 9 exhibition tables featuring local and national disarmament organizations
Download conference flyer here.
Download conference agenda here.
Alliance Dr. Olga Mohan High School (ADOMHS) is a charter school in downtown Los Angeles dedicated to academic excellence in low-income communities. ADOMHS was recently named a 2017 National Blue Ribbon School, the nation’s highest honor for schools. ADOMHS students have participated in disarmament forums in Nagasaki, Japan and Vienna, Austria and have successfully petitioned their school to become a Nuclear Weapons Free Zone. See www.mohanhs.org.
Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles (PSR-LA) is the largest chapter of the national organization Physicians for Social Responsibility, American recipient of the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize awarded to International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War and partner organization of the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize winner, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. PSR-LA advocates for policies that protect public health from nuclear and environmental threats. See psr-la.org.