A learning experience: SIU hosts annual Tunnel of Oppression - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

A learning experience: SIU hosts annual Tunnel of Oppression

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - Fighting fire with fire, Southern Illinois University will use venom to take on the poisonous problem of oppression. 

SIU will host its annual Tunnel of Oppression Feb. 23-26 in the lower level of Grinnell Hall in Carbondale. 

"Every year the tunnel is drastically different because topics vary from year to year," tunnel organizer Andre Burns said. 

This year, visitors will maneuver through a maze of different discriminatory scenes including racism and issues dealing with body image.

"Each room is a snapshot of oppression that people experience on a daily basis," Burns said.

The goal is to harness the negativity of discrimination to bring positive change. 

In the past, Burns said attendees have displayed a wide variety of emotions including anger, frustration and sadness. 

"The tunnel doesn't suggest how [people] should react," Burns said. "However, the experience can be a critical learning moment in creating a dialogue."

The Tunnel of Oppression is free and open to the public, but due to "graphic language and images" organizers suggest attendees be at least 17 years old. Parents will have to sign a waiver for anyone under college. 

Tours begin Monday, Feb. 23 at 5 p.m. A new tour will start every half hour until 8:30 p.m. The tunnel will reopen at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday with the same tour schedule. 

Groups are limited to 20 people per tour. 

For more information or to reserve a spot call 618-536-2054. You can also book a tour by visiting www.housing.siu.edu/tunnel. 

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