In 1991 members of three religious congregations in Sudbury, Massachusetts, one Jewish, one Roman Catholic and one United Methodist, initiated Students Together Opposing Prejudice (S.T.O.P.) to educate junior high school youth about discrimination, prejudice and stereotyping. Rev. Avis Hoyt-O’Connor, Sheila Goldberg, and Susan Murphy developed S.T.O.P. in response to an anti-Semitic incident at a local elementary school. The goal was to teach students about discrimination and to provide them with skills to become agents of change in their community.
“STOP has been so important … not only because of the topics covered, but because of the connections our sons have made with the kids from other faith communities. We sometimes overlook the fact that prejudice exists. I believe the program is even more important because of the times we live in. I asked Michael what he enjoys about STOP—he looked at me quizzically and said, “Because it’s FUN!”