Photo by Heather LaBow, First Place winner of the 2014 FSW/NPPA “Free Speech Everyday” photo contest.
What is Free Speech Week?
Free Speech Week (FSW) is a yearly event to raise public awareness of the importance of freedom of speech and of the press in our democracy- and to celebrate that freedom. As freedom of speech and of the press are rights all Americans share, this non-partisan, non-ideological event is intended to be a unifying celebration.
When is it?
Free Speech Week (FSW) takes place during the third full week of October annually. This year it will be observed October 18-24, 2021.
Who Can Celebrate?
Individuals, schools, and all types of organizations are encouraged to recognize and celebrate Free Speech Week. In short – everyone!
How Can We Participate?
As an Individual or Family:
- RAISE FREE SPEECH AWARENESS by telling your friends about FSW. Talk to your kids about freedom of speech and press freedom and how it affects their lives.
- EXERCISE YOUR FREE SPEECH RIGHT by posting a message online. Compose a poem. Display a bumper sticker. Keep a journal. Write a letter to the editor. Express yourself in the ways that work best for you. Just let your voice be heard!
- GET OTHERS INVOLVED by talking to the organizations you belong to. Tell them about FSW, and ask them to be partnering organizations.
As an Educator:
- Dedicate class time during FSW to teach the history of freedom of speech and of the press, discuss topics surrounding these freedoms, and create projects that ask students to explore what freedom of speech means to them. There are some terrific lesson plans available online from different organizations; to get you started, we have compiled a list of some of our favorites here.
As an Organization: