Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Study shows 2/3 of gay students face harrassment

A new survey by the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network has been released, and the results are not pretty. Last year, the organization studied 1,732 gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered students between the ages of 13 and 20, and living in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Almost two-thirds said they were verbally harrassed because of their sexual orientation, and half reported they were harrassed because of their gender identity. More than a third suffered anti-gay physical harrassment, and 16.5% experienced anti-transgender physical harrassment. 18% reported they had heard anti-gay remarks made by school staff members.

Gay students were found to be more than five times more likely to cut class, and in the last studied month, 28% of respondents said they had skipped school in the last month because they felt unsafe.

In 2004, one state proposed banning school gay-straight alliances, and in 2005, six states proposded such bans. Only one state, Maine, has specifically included bullying of gay students in its anti-bullying law.


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