Help Pass the Federal Safe Schools Improvement Act!

We’ve just received word from our colleagues at GLSEN that The Safe Schools Improvement Act, a federal anti-bullying bill, will be introduced in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, May 5, 2009 by California Rep. Linda Sanchez. We need your help Monday, May 4th to add to the bipartisan list of 34 cosponsors. The more cosponsors, the bigger the message Congress will receive that it needs to act.

Please call your Representative TODAY—Monday, May 4th—ask her or him to cosponsor the Safe Schools Improvement Act to establish a federal anti-bullying policy.

To call your local representative, dial the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at 202.224.3121. Ask to be connected to your Representative’s office.

If you are not sure who your Representative is, click here and enter your state and zip code.

When making calls:
• Inform the office that the bill will be introduced on Tuesday.
• Ask if the Representative has signed on. If s/he hasn’t signed, urge the Representative to cosponsor.
• They can contact Celeste Drake of Representative Linda Sanchez’s office if they wish to cosponsor.

IMPORTANT: If your representative is already a co-sponsor, call and thank her or him for supporting efforts to stop bullying. To see a list of current cosponsors, click here.

About the Bill

The Safe Schools Improvement Act will amend the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act, which supports programs that prevent violence and drug use in and around schools in order to foster a safe and drug-free learning environment that supports student academic achievement.

The amendments are to add definitions for bullying and harassment and to include the two definitions in pre-existing requirements on reporting and on the use of funding. The proposed legislation explicitly states that the bill will in no way interfere with Freedom of Speech and Expression Laws.

To learn more about the bill, click here.

To see how the bill will amend the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act, read GLSEN’s SSIA Comparison Chart (pdf).

In solidarity,

Kate Kendell, Esq.
Executive Director
National Center for Lesbian Rights

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