What is SOS?
- We focus our attention on the four areas in which the largest numbers of animals suffer the most intensely for the longest periods of time: in laboratories, in the food industry, in the clothing trade, and in the entertainment industry. We do this because we know that animals are not ours to use in any way.
- We welcome all. SOS is an abolitionist group—we aim for total animal liberation and will accept nothing less. To achieve this, we must be welcoming and accepting of all people. Racism, sexism, ableism, classism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, and other “isms” are all connected and almost always overlap with each other and with speciesism—none of which will be tolerated.
- We choose information over violence. The very heart of all of SOS actions is the idea that it is the right of all beings to be free from harm. We aim to inform the general public about the social justice issue of animal rights. We aren’t afraid to make the difficult comparisons, say the unpopular things, or point out the uncomfortable truths if it means that animals will benefit.
What do you mean by speciesism?
Speciesism is the human-held belief that all other animal species are inferior—even though, in the ways that matter most, we are all the same. We all feel love, pain, joy, and fear—meaning that all animals deserve equal consideration and deserve to be free from human exploitation. Animals are not ours to experiment on, eat, wear, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way. Rejecting speciesism means taking an objective look at our personal choices and eliminating the ones that hurt animals.
What does SOS want?
- An end to speciesism: Bullying and violence aren’t limited to humans any more than they’re limited to certain races or gender identities. If we want a more just world, we must work to end all forms of prejudice, not just the ones that affect us personally. When we see examples of speciesism from individuals or industries, we must rise up and speak out.
- Mass actions: We will change the world for animals—we will change the world for all of us—but we can only do it together. We must be active to resist violence. We must revolt against injustice, and to do this, we must persuade others to join us in taking action. Action is vital if we are to reach the masses and initiate discussion and debate, questioning of the status quo, and real change.
- Responsibilities for actions: Humans are capable of making decisions based on ethics—such as how to feed, clothe, and entertain ourselves—so we have the responsibility of making the kindest choices possible and doing our best to reduce suffering of any kind. Like us, other animals experience fear, pain, and distress. But humans are uniquely capable of choosing between cruelty and kindness, so we should never willfully inflict pain on any sentient being.
Why the name SOS?
Speciesism is the greatest social injustice in history. Students Opposing Speciesism (SOS) is a movement based on urgency—trillions of animals are suffering right now in laboratories, on factory farms, in marine parks, and elsewhere. And they need us to rise up right now—not next week, not tomorrow, but now.
SOS is a youth-led movement of determined students to loudly oppose speciesism. Other generations may not have taken action quickly enough to end this cruel mindset—but today’s generation can and will.
How do I join?
Sign up here to join our movement and receive e-mails and texts from us letting you know about campaigns and actions to help animals, take part in activism training courses and workshops with other student activists, get free stickers to spread the word, and more. Want to find other student activists near you? Check out the SOS hub map to join activists in your area. Each hub on the map has an IG account listed, so you can DM to get started!
What is an SOS hub?
An SOS hub is a group of individuals who take action against speciesism in their community. You can join an existing hub or apply to organize a hub if there isn’t already one in your area!
What does an SOS hub do?
SOS hubs hold meaningful actions that inform and drive change for animals. Members stand up against speciesism and encourage others to question their own actions and the status quo.
Why is SOS made up of Gen Z?
Gen Z will be the generation to end speciesism. Young people have powerful voices and must use them to help abolish this social injustice.
What are some actions my hub can take?
You can create change for animals in your community with provocative campaigns and actions—think compelling protests, street art and theater, light brigades, vigils, and more. If you’re interested in taking action at school, whether you’re in high school or college, we can help you with campaigns, movie screenings, talks, or eye-catching protests.
What do I need to know before attending a hub event?
We welcome all. PETA is an abolitionist group—we aim for total animal liberation and will accept nothing less. To achieve this, we must be welcoming and accepting of all people. Racism, sexism, ableism, classism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, and other “isms” are all connected and almost always overlap with each other and with speciesism—none of which will be tolerated. A hub is a safe space for everyone to be involved in any way they feel comfortable.
What resources does this program provide?
Hub organizers will receive SOS kits that guide them through campaigns—with information for their group and the public as well as teachers and parents (if applicable). We’ll send you everything you need to get started and work alongside you as you create change for animals—but you will be the organizers and voices of SOS.
How do I contact someone if I have questions about the program?
If you have a question about your specific area, contact your hub organizer. If you have questions about starting a hub or other general questions, e-mail us at [email protected].
Are there nationwide actions?
Yes! Hubs throughout the U.S. and Canada are all working on similar campaigns. Our goal is total animal liberation, and we need to take consistent, reliable action in order to achieve it.
How can I get in touch with members near me?
Click here to see the map of hubs around the U.S. and Canada. If there isn’t one in your area, we can help you start one—or we can help you get active in other ways.
Is there a way to connect with other hubs?
Yes! Click here to see the map of hubs around the country. Each hub on the map has an IG account listed, so you can DM to get started. If there isn’t one in your area, we can help you start one or help you get active in other ways.
CAN I ADD SOS TO MY RÉSUMÉ IF I'M A HUB Organizer?
Of course! Adding your experience as an SOS hub organizer to your résumé shows your dedication and passion for what you believe in, and it lets future employers know that you’re a hard worker (even in your free time). Hopefully, they’ll think you’re pretty great for trying to make the world a more compassionate place.
Need community service hours for school? Let your SOS adviser know and we’ll be happy to sign off on that.