A new study shows that Minnesota LGBT students experience significant harassment and bullying for their sexual orientation:
- 80 percent reported verbal harassment.
- 47 percent reported physical harassment (pushing).
- 19 percent reported assaults (punching, kicking).
- Almost 100 percent reported hearing “gay” used in a derogatory manner.
- 92 percent reported hearing other anti-gay terms.
Safety concerns have been heightened in Minnesota schools after a spate of suicides in the Anoka Hennepin School District that parents and friends speculate were motivated by bullying.
A constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage is on Minnesota’s 2012 ballot, which means opponents of equality will be pouring millions of dollars into the state to spread stereotyping stigma-mongering messages over the next year and a half. When young LGBT people are surrounded by conservative attitudes and are not accepted by their families or communities, it greatly increases the likelihood that they will attempt suicide or experience other negative health outcomes.