Georgia Safe Schools Coalition, Inc.
LGBTQQ Families Resources
Bullying among Children of LGBTQ Parents*
- Nearly a quarter (23%) of students felt unsafe around other students at school due to others' negative attitudes toward people with LGBT parents.
- 42% of students said they had been verbally harassed at school in the past year because their parents were LGBT. Over a third (37%) of students reported that they had been verbally harassed because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation and nearly a third had experienced verbal harassment because of the way in which they expressed their gender (32%).
- Nearly a quarter (22%) of students said that a teacher, principal or other school staff person had discouraged them from talking about their family at school, and more than a third (36%) had felt that school personnel did not acknowledge their LGBT family (e.g., not permitting one parent to sign a student's form because s/he was not the legal parent/guardian). Furthermore, 28% said they heard teachers or other school staff make negative comments about LGBT families.
GLSEN, 2008. Involved, invisible, ignored: The experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender parents and their children in our nations k-12 schools. New York: GLSEN.
State Laws and Policies
Prior to 2010, Georgia anti bullying statutes did not clearly define bullying and harassment. Moreover, they did not include enumerated categories to protect students from bullying on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, race, religion, ethnicity or disability.
Georgia Equality and its allies have been working in the Georgia Legislature to pass a uniform, statewide anti-bullying bill since 2008.
In 2010 Georgia Equality along with its partners passed an anti-bullying bill that would force all the school districts in Georgia to update their anti-bullying policy. The new law accurately defines the scope and impact of bullying, requires local school systems to work with faculty, parents, and students to adopt and enforce anti-bullying policies, and makes it easier for students and necessary for school employees to report information about bullying.
Enumerated categories were not required from the new law but local districts have the option of including them. We now have the unique opportunity to ensure that enumerated categories (ie. sexual orientation, gender ID, race, religion, etc.) make it into law across the state, in each and every school district. Enumerated categories are consistently shown to reduce bullying and foster a welcoming environment in schools, not just for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and students perceived as such, but for all students as well.
To find out how you can help, visit www.georgiaequality.org and join their Safe Schools Campaign.
Students of LGBTQ parents are also granted "equal protection" from discrimination under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.
Other Resources for LGBTQ Families
- Children of Lesbians and Gays Everywhere (COLAGE) is a national movement of children, youth and adults with one or more LGBTQ parent(s). COLAGE builds community and works toward social justice through youth empowerment , leadership development, education, and advocacy.
- Family Equality Council works to ensure equality for LGBT families by building community, changing hearts and minds and advancing social justice for all families.
- MEGA Family Project is a nonpartisan, statewide organization (in Georgia) dedicated to providing support, education, and advocacy work on behalf of LGBT families. This organization no longer offers direct services but they have a lot of resources and contact information still available on their website.
- Pathways Transition Program has resources and training and group counseling available for foster, adoptive, relative, and group homes on LGBTQ youth.
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