Workshop Probes Hate Crimes and Bullying Laws
New York, Sept. 25, 2012—Outrage at the invasion of privacy by Rutgers University student Dharun Ravi, who spied by webcam on the sexual encounters of his gay roommate, Tyler Clementi, turned to shock for civil libertarians when they realized Ravi faced a possible 10 years in prison under hate crimes laws.
“The policy remedies we look to are about putting in place a basic expectation for adults in the school community which requires them to do their job–which is to respond.” GLSEN’s legal package calls for schools to engage in “naming, training, reporting and funding” to stop bullying. The federal Safe Schools Improvement Act would require schools receiving federal funds to adopt these measures. In May, Maine became the 15th state to enact an anti-bullying law with enumerated protections that include sexual orientation and gender identity.