Gay Students Lobby For California School Safety Bills

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Hundreds of gay youth and their allies rallied March 6 in favor of two school safety bills that are currently being considered by the California State Legislature.

According to the Sacramento Bee, organizers of Queer Youth Advocacy Day, which is sponsored by the Gay-Straight Alliance Network and Equality California, believe that more than 700 students participated in the event. The students urged their local legislators to support Assembly Bill (AB) 606 and Senate Bill (SB)1437. They also lobbied state politicians to oppose AB 2311.

Assemblyman Lloyd Leven, D-Van Nuys, has authored the Safe Place to Learn Act (AB 606), which outlines steps school districts should take so they will comply with the California Student Safety and Violence Act of 2000. Senator Sheila Kuehl, D-Santa Monica, has written the Bias-Free Curriculum Act (SB 1437), which would add sexual orientation to the list of categories protected in the education code.

Assemblyman Dennis Mountjoy, R-Monrovia, has proposed AB 2311, which would not allow the “promotion of sexuality” in public education.

About 200 members of anti-gay groups demonstrated against the AB 606 and SB 1437, calling them unnecessary. Although both sides briefly confronted each other, police quickly moved in to separate them.

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