The Youth and Disarmament working group provides a forum for networking and building cooperation between various youth-led nuclear disarmament initiatives, and with youth working on other related issues or peace and sustainable development. The working group also provides a bridge between youth and other Abolition 2000 actions and initiatives.
The working group includes representatives from Amplify, Ban All Nukes generation (BANg), Chain Reaction 2016, Global Zero, IPPNW Student Network, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Nonproliferation and Disarmament (youth), Parliament of the World’s Religions (youth ambassadors), UNFOLD ZERO, Youth Future Project and others.
Contact: To join the Youth Network contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Interim convenors: Marzhan Nurzhan (email@example.com) and Alexandra Goman (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The working group met most recently in New York in June 2017 during the UN negotiations on a Treaty to prohibit nuclear weapons, at which members discussed a range of youth actions for September 26 (the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons) and to build support for the 2018 UN High-Level Conference on Nuclear Disarmament. These included:
- Signing the petition against nuclear weapons at the ATOM project website (int`l campaign);
- Screening the powerful film “Where the wind blew” at universities or in local cinemas with the help of local peace and disarmament organizations
- Youth sending video messages to their countries’ leaders, calling on them to participate in 2018 UNHLC and to adopt concrete nuclear disarmament measures at the conference. For non-nuclear States this could be announcing their ratification of the ban treaty. For nuclear-armed and allied countries it could include adopting no-first use policies and announcing a framework to achieve a nuclear-weapon-free world;
- Asking their mayors, parliamentarians and religious leaders to endorse the joint statement ‘A Nuclear-Weapon-Free World; Our Common Good’, which is being used to build global support for UN initiatives such as the ban treaty and the UNHLC.
- Using hashtags #YouthAgainstNukes and #NukeFreeFuture for social media actions and other posts.
Examples of other youth nuclear disarmament initiatives:
- Arms Down Campaign, organised by Religions for Peace Youth Network. Collected endorsements from over 20 million faith-based youth for their appeal to abolish nuclear weapons and re-direct 10% of military spending to sustainable development.
- Students for a Nuclear-Weapon-Free World. Launched by the World Federation of United Nations Associations, the network held essay and video competitions and international youth forums on nuclear disarmament.
- Hiroshima and Nagasaki Youth Declaration for a Nuclear-Weapon-Free World. Adopted in 2010
- Student simulated negotiations on a nuclear weapons convention, organised by Regina Hagen (INESAP and Darmstadt Technical University)
- Open the Door to a Nuclear-Weapon-Free World. A youth-led initiative to support the 2013 UN Open Ended Working Group on Nuclear Disarmament (OEWG).
- Valentines Day – I break up with Nukes! Organised by Global Zero youth from around the world on Valentines Day 2014.
- Global Wave 2015. Organised by youth in April 2015, but involving actions by all ages to ‘wave goodbye to nuclear weapons’.
- Bike around the Bomb. Organised by Global Zero youth and held in over 70 cities around the world. Youth cycle around the perimeter of what would be the zone of absolute destruction in their city it a nuclear bomb would be detonated there.
- Youth Nuclear Abolition Summit. Held in Hiroshima in August 2015 organised by SGI and others. Initiated the Amplify Youth Network.
- Origami cranes to UN diplomats. UNFOLD ZERO youth greeted ambassadors to the OEWG in Geneva with origami cranes. See also the story of Sadako and the 1000 Cranes.
- Chain Reaction 2016. A chain reaction of global actions from July-October 2016 organised by youth from Basel Peace Office
- Don’t nuke Us. Social media action organised by Chain Reaction for the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.
- Youth Against Nukes. Youth organising section of Peace and Planet. Organised a youth program for the 2015 Global Mobilisation for a Nuclear-Free, Peaceful, Just and Sustainable World.
- Pugwash Youth Award 2016. Award from UK Pugwash Youth for the best paper written for UK nuclear policy by a young academic.
- Declaration on Youth and Demilitarization. Adopted at the Youth Forum of the International Peace Bureau 2016 World Congress.
- Youth Peace Bike Ride 2017. Organised by Youth/Students Section of IPPNW.