The Youth Equality Forum founded by Fairfield University senior, Peter Baron, provides a new opportunity for Generation Z nationwide to express individual experiences and opinions regarding social issues of today. 

According to its website, the recently launched, student-run initiative “aims to provide a platform where students and young people who have experienced discrimination, encountered any form of racism, sexism, homophobia, or transphobia, or who simply want to share their thoughts on a social issue can share their stories and opinions.”

The forum is set up primarily as a blog, allowing young individuals to write between 500-750 words in length. There is no limit as to how many blogs one can contribute and individuals are further asked to submit any graphics or video that coincide with their blogs to be added to the website’s gallery page. 

In the midst of publishing his book, If Only We Knew: How Ignorance Creates and Amplifies the Greatest Risks Facing Society, Baron faced great difficulty as a young author. “I learned that it’s really hard for people our age to get published because we don’t have big platforms, we don’t have fancy degrees [and] we don’t have big names unless you’re a celebrity,” he said. 

Upon reflection toward the challenges that Generation Z face, Baron worked this past summer to create an outlet that amplifies young voices. While working at the National Urban League in New York City, he received help from Patrick Gusman, lead strategic coordinator at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC), to work with UDC students as well. 

Barons shared his hope for The Youth Equality Forum to reach students from universities and other members of Generation Z across the country, offering a wide range of perspectives and experiences for others to learn from. Currently, the board consists of eight students: six Fairfield University students, including Baron, and two UDC students. This number, however, is expected to grow. 

In an attempt to run the forum “as democratic as possible,” there is no hierarchy within the board, according to Baron. All student members have helped create the forum’s website and are equally responsible in carrying out its mission. “I wanted to run this semester, not as someone in charge or in a leadership position, but just someone who is part of the team,” said Baron. 

Baron and his peers hope that this forum will reach students nationwide, allowing them to share and learn from each other’s experiences facing injustice. 

Those who are interested in writing for The Youth Equality Forum can find the submission guidelines here and should email tobeequalforum@gmail.com with any questions.

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