Archive for March, 2010

Washington State House and Senate UNANIMOUSLY Pass Anti-Bullying Bill
March 15, 2010

Anti-bullying legislation passed the Washington State House (97-0) and Senate (48-0) last week that includes protections for LGBTQ Youth in public schools. Governor Christine Gregoire has already vowed to sign the bill as soon as it crosses her desk.

This legislation will create state-wide policies regarding bullying and harassment which will be required to be published online, as well as a staff position in every school responsible for handling all complaints of bullying and harassment.

Josh Friedes, advocacy director of Equal Rights Washington said in a statement,  “Today let us celebrate the leadership of Representative Marko Liias who championed this legislation, the commitment of the legislature to ensuring that every student enjoys a safe learning environment and the ongoing work of the Safe Schools Coalition.”

See “Celebrate a Victory Against Bullying” published by Equal Rights Washington:

Celebrate a Victory Against Bullying

Let’s hope the United States Congress follows suit….

On January 27th of this year,  Colorado Democrat and Co-Chair of the House LGBT Equality Caucus Jared Polis, who is an openly Gay Congressmen, introduced H. R. 4530, the Student Non-Discrimination Act of 2010.  There were 60 co-sponsors of the bill.

The following quote from Congressman Polis appears on his website:

“Every day innocent students fall victim to relentless harassment and discrimination from teachers, staff, and fellow students based on their sexual orientation,” said Polis.  “These actions not only hurt our students and our schools but, left unchecked, can also lead to life-threatening violence.  Like Title VI for minorities in the 60s and Title IX for women in the 70s, my legislation puts LGBT students on an equal footing with their peers, so they can attend school and get a quality education, free from fear.”

Polis, also a member of the House Education and Labor Committee,  is a former chairman of the Colorado State Board of Education and has founded and served as the superintendent of charter schools serving at-risk student populations.  He further states,

“Hatred has no place in the classroom. Every student has the right to an education free from harassment and violence.  This bill will protect the individual freedoms of our students and enshrine the values of equality and opportunity in our classrooms.”

see:  Congressman Jared Poliswebsite

also:   1-27_SNDA_Fact_Sheet and 1-27_SNDA_Bill_Text

To help this bill, contact your Congressmen and women and let them know it’s time to provide a safe learning environment for our youth, free from harassment, bullying and fear.

I look forward to reporting its passage. -MsQueer


Additional resources for this story:  Julie Bolcer, The Advocate, March 8, 2010, and Ruth Schneider, 365Gay.com, March 9, 2010.

©2010 MsQueer.com. All rights reserved.

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LET CONSTANCE MCMILLEN TAKE HER GIRLFRIEND TO THE PROM!
March 13, 2010

I found this on YouTube from Lizzy the Lezzy. Here’s the video and all the information included on her description of this issue, as well as the links to the ACLU site.

Please contact the people listed below and help to correct this injustice. A lesbian high school girl wants to take her girlfriend to the Prom. So the school cancels the Prom! WOW! Say, is it 2010?

“And the Beat Goes On…..”

This is important! Please spread the word!
LET CONSTANCE MCMILLEN TAKE HER GIRLFRIEND TO THE PROM! — Digg it here, let’s get her story worldwide attention! http://digg.com/d31LOSv

The lesbians are behind you Constance!

Help Constance McMillan go to her prom with her girlfriend by confronting the homophobia standing in her way. Here is what you can do:

Respectfully contact superintendent
Teresa McNeece
tmcneece@itawamba.k12.ms.us
(662) 862-2159 Ext. 14

Respectfully contact school principal
Trae Wiygul
twiygul@itawamba.k12.ms.us
(662) 862-3104

Respectfully contact school board member
Eddie Hood
a082315@allstate.com

Respectfully contact school board member
Jackie Nichols
jnichols@itawamba.k12.ms.us

Respectfully contact school board member
Harold Martin
hmartin@itawamba.k12.ms.us

Respectfully contact school board member
Clara Brown
cbrown@network-one.com

Respectfully contact school board member
Tony Wallace
twallace@nexband.com

Only when you do something will you make a difference.

Taken from ACLU Blog of Rights
Constance McMillen, an 18 year-old senior at Itawamba Agricultural High School, approached her schools administration because she wanted to attend prom with her girlfriend, also an IAHS student, and knew that same-sex dates had been banned in the past. After meeting with school officials, she was told that she and her girlfriend would not be allowed to attend together.
The ACLU have filed a complaint in federal court, asking the court to reinstate the prom for all students at the school and charging Itawamba County School District officials with violating Constance McMillens First Amendment right to freedom of expression.

Join the Facebook group “1,000 Strong for Constance McMillan”
and sign the petition!

See also the coverage of this story at Change.org’s LGBT Rights page:

“Protecting LGBT Students from Discrimination”

PLEASE TAKE ACTION! Whether it’s schools or individuals, treatment of this kind is still “bullying” and WE MUST TEACH OUR CHILDREN A BETTER WAY! Let your voice be heard in favor of respect and allowing. That is what is meant in “Justice and Freedom For All!”

-MsQueer

©2010 MsQueer.com. All rights reserved.

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