A safe and comfortable learning environment is vital for the academic progress and personal development of our children. Still, too many students are victims of bullying which wrecks their academic progress and can destroy self-esteem. A school should be a safe and open learning environment for all students, not a place of abuse and mockery. Therefore, I am proud to once again be an original co-sponsor of the Safe Schools Improvement Act, which was introduced by Representative Linda Sanchez on March 14, 2013.
This legislation requires schools across the country to institute policies that ban bullying and ensure that all students are protected from targeted harassment based on their race, gender, real or perceived sexual orientation, and any other basis. Furthermore, I laud the more than 100 organizations supporting this legislation. It is a collective endeavor to make violence and harassment in our schools a relic of the past.
Throughout my tenure in Congress, I have fought all forms of exclusion, harassment and discrimination wherever it takes place. The seeds of hate and intolerance must not be allowed to root themselves in our schools and communities.