Rep. Brian Sims, who many of you probably know is PA’s first openly gay legislator, is currently championing an anti-bullying bill in the PA State House, much like the superhero he is. The bill, which has the support of at least one member of the House’s Republican majority, seeks to train educators on the prevention of and intervention of harassment, bullying and cyberbullying. In addition, it includes deadlines and guidelines on reporting acts of violence to the online safe schools portal.
On his support of the bill, Sims said to his colleagues:
As many of you can imagine, as a member of the LGBT community myself, such measures are something that I am particularly attuned to. The fact remains that young members of the LGBT community (or those perceived to be) are bullied and otherwise discriminated against at alarming rates. Every study that looks to analyze the impact of bullying has shown there to be lasting, and extremely detrimental effects that can stay with a person for a lifetime. I’ve thought long and hard about the PASS [Pennsylvania Safe Schools] Act and I am satisfied that it will help take the first steps towards addressing bullying and discrimination in our schools. For that reason, not only have I signed on as a co-sponsor of this bill, I’m asking that each of you do so as well.
I have literally spoken to thousands of straight and LGBT students at high schools and colleges across the nation on the issues of discrimination and bullying, and I can tell you the protections in this bill are badly needed.”
The whole bill is available for your perusal here.
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