Tuesday, May 24 , 2016, 3:54 am | Partly Cloudy 52º

Posted on 04.20.2012 6:49 p.m.

Obama Endorses Capps Legislation to Address Bullying in Schools

Student Non-Discrimination Act and Safe Schools Improvement Act designed to protect students

Source: Ashley Schapitl for Rep. Lois Capps

Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, on Friday applauded an announcement from the White House that President Barack Obama has endorsed the Student Non-Discrimination Act (House Resolution 998) and the Safe Schools Improvement Act (House Resolution 1648), bipartisan legislation introduced in Congress to address school bullying and safeguard vulnerable students. Capps is a co-sponsor of both bills.

“I was very pleased to learn that President Obama supports both the Student Non-Discrimination Act and the Safe Schools Improvement Act. These bills are tremendously important and will make our schools safer for all students.

“For students who are, or are perceived to be, LGBT, going to school can induce fear and anxiety because of bullying, hostility or a generally unsupportive environment. This isn’t what the experience of going to school should be for any of our children.

“On the Central Coast, we know all too well that when schools are not the safe places they are supposed to be, the safety and well-being of LGBT students are put at risk. The death of Larry King in Oxnard and other tragedies around the country are a reminder that hostility, violence and harassment directed at LGBT youth must be stopped.

“I’m hopeful the president’s support for these two bills today will send a message to the leadership in Congress that it’s time to bring these bills to the floor for a vote.”

The Student Non-Discrimination Act, sponsored by Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., and Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo., would prohibit discrimination in public schools against any student on the basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity.

The Safe Schools Improvement Act, sponsored by Sen. Bob Casey, D-Penn., and Rep. Linda Sanchez, D-Calif., would require school districts to adopt codes of conduct specifically prohibiting bullying and harassment, including on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and religion.

Capps is a vocal, longtime supporter of equality for all Americans, including gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people. She supports repealing the Defense of Marriage Act and is an original co-sponsor of the Respect for Marriage Act, which would repeal provisions in DOMA that prevent same-sex couples who are married under state laws from receiving federal benefits.

Capps was also a leader on the issue of repealing the military’s discriminatory “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. As vice chairwoman of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus, she supports full equality for LGBT Americans in essential civil rights areas, including but not limited to employment and housing discrimination, immigration status, federal benefits for families and creating safe schools for LGBT youth.

— Ashley Schapitl is press secretary for Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk's intent is not to limit the discussion of our stories but to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and must be free of profanity and abusive language and attacks.

By posting on Noozhawk, you:

» Agree to be respectful. Noozhawk encourages intelligent and impassioned discussion and debate, but now has a zero-tolerance policy for those who cannot express their opinions in a civil manner.

» Agree not to use Noozhawk’s forums for personal attacks. This includes any sort of personal attack — including, but not limited to, the people in our stories, the journalists who create these stories, fellow readers who comment on our stories, or anyone else in our community.

» Agree not to post on Noozhawk any comments that can be construed as libelous, defamatory, obscene, profane, vulgar, harmful, threatening, tortious, harassing, abusive, hateful, sexist, racially or ethnically objectionable, or that are invasive of another’s privacy.

» Agree not to post in a manner than emulates, purports or pretends to be someone else. Under no circumstances are readers posting to Noozhawk to knowingly use the name or identity of another person, whether that is another reader on this site, a public figure, celebrity, elected official or fictitious character. This also means readers will not knowingly give out any personal information of other members of these forums.

» Agree not to solicit others. You agree you will not use Noozhawk’s forums to solicit and/or advertise for personal blogs and websites, without Noozhawk’s express written approval.

Noozhawk’s management and editors, in our sole discretion, retain the right to remove individual posts or to revoke the access privileges of anyone who we believe has violated any of these terms or any other term of this agreement; however, we are under no obligation to do so.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.


Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.