Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-Ill.) introduced a bill Monday as part of an effort to halt LGBTQ bullying.
The State Taskforce Opportunity Program (STOP) Bullying Act would encourage states to develop anti-bullying task forces to research and reduce bullying in primary and secondary schools, according to a release from Krishnamoorthi’s office.
“Every child should feel safe at school – period. Yet, bullying and harassment continues to persist in middle and high schools nationwide,” Krishnamoorthi said in the release. “Hostile school environments have been proven to have a detrimental effect on the academic success and health of each student.”
The Stop Bullying Act would provide states with Department of Education grants if the task forces were created. The task forces would send a report to the chief education officer of the state and the secretary of state on their findings, recommendations and suggested best practices to limit bullying and inform parents and staff.
The task forces would need to be led by the chief education officer of the state and include teachers from elementary and secondary schools, administrators, K-12 students, parents, guidance counselors, child psychologists, lawyers, representatives from organizations that focus on LGBTQ students and representatives from the state’s education agency.
Thirteen states and the District of Columbia have already created these task forces to study school safety for all children, according to the release.
The Illinois Democrat’s bill has been endorsed by GLSEN, an organization that fights discrimination, harassment and bullying of those who identify as LGBTQ.