Illinois Senate Defeats Anti-Bullying Bill For A Second Time

Yesterday, the Illinois Senate attempted a second vote on a bill that would require schools to implement anti-bullying programs and reporting structures for bullying incidents. Citing concerns from the Illinois Family Institute, a hate group, conservative lawmakers have claimed the bill would force students to learn about the diversity of sexuality and gender against their (parents’) beliefs. The bill contains no actual requirements as to what is taught in programs, and even without this bill, sexual orientation and gender identity are already protected under state bullying laws. The Senate has until end of session tomorrow to reconsider the bill, but in the meantime, Shannon Sullivan of the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance has declared the vote a “win for bullying.”