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All Good Things Must Come To An End

Northwest Suburban Peace & Education Project
All Good Things Must Come To An End

April 2021

Dear Peace Friends:

NWSUBPEP has decided to disband. We all have mixed feelings about the decision. We knew it was coming.

Before getting into an analysis of why and what this means going forward, we think it’s important to acknowledge all we’ve accomplished since 2004:

  •         Monthly presence in all six high schools in District 214. We tried to have a theme at our table every month; everything from Selective Service to informal surveys to body count.
  •         Instigated the opt-out process and published results every year
  •         Got the district to adopt an opt-out process for the Joint Advertising Market Research & Studies (JAMRS) database; one of the few if not the only school district in the country to do so
  •         Were not successful in getting the district to adopt option 8 as the default for the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test but they adopted a standard description of the test       which makes clear that it’s administered by the military and contact information is collected by the military
  •         Challenged the presence of the Armed Forces at the district college fair. They stopped the practice and allowed only military schools (e.g. West Point, Air Force Academy, etc)
  •         Made presentations at several schools
  •         Hosted many community events
  •         Spoke at a number of board meetings
  •         Monitored school activity and raised concerns when we felt it was needed e.g. Army recruitment van showing up at school.
  •         Published and distributed a Zine which included contributions from D214 students
  •         We were interviewed for a book “Counter Recruitment and the Campaign to Demilitarize Public Schools” by Seth Kershner and Scott Harding

We had been losing members over the years. None of us have children or grandchildren in any D214 schools any longer. Then the school district essentially made the decision for us by implementing a new policy which restricts all outside groups to one visit/semester. Although there were slight differences in how the policy was administered between the six high schools, it was a game changer for us. To be clear, the same policy applied to the military. In fact there was a rumor that the policy came about by a parent angry about the presence of recruiters at the school with free access to the students.

We encourage anyone interested in counter military recruitment work to connect with any/all of the organizations listed below:

National Network Opposing Militarization of Youth          
Veterans for Peace 
Code Pink: Divest from the War Machine          
On Earth Peace: Stop Recruiting Kids Campaign