Good Morning America Coverage (May 30, 2001):|
Alone in a Crowd - Abuse of Gay Students Rampant, Study Finds
Getting teased in school can be just the beginning for gay students, who may also endure physical abuse in the hallways. A report from the Human Rights Watch says that gay teens are bullied to the point that it is a human rights issue.
Bullied Gay Teens
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth of school age in the United States often suffer daily harassment, abuse, and violence at the hands of their peers. These students spend an inordinate amount of energy figuring out how to get to and from school safely, avoiding the hallways when other students are present in order to escape slurs and shoves, cutting gym classes to escape being beaten up—in short, attempting to become invisible.
For some, the burden of coping each day with relentless harassment is too much. They drop out of school. Some commit suicide. Others barely survive. A few fight back, demanding that school administrations ensure their safety, that recognition of gays and lesbians be integrated into the curriculum, that they be allowed to organize gay-straight student groups, and that they be encouraged to celebrate their identities.
© Patricia Williams for Human Rights Watch, 2001
Based on in-depth interviews with 140 youth and 130 teachers, administrators, counselors, parents, and youth service providers in seven states, this report offers the first comprehensive look at the human rights abuses suffered by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students at the hands of their peers. Teachers and administrators frequently turn their backs on these abuses, refusing to take reports of harassment or hold accountable those who commit these acts; in some instances, officials encourage or themselves participate in these abuses.
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P., New Hampshire|
Weaver, Teacher, Utah|
M., Midwestern United States|