For Immediate Release
Bill that Supports LGBT Students Moves Through Committee
Los Angeles - This morning, AB 827, authored by Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell (D-Long Beach) and sponsored by Equality California, passed out of the Assembly Education Committee with a 6 to 1 vote. The bill would provide more support and a safer learning environment for LGBT students by requiring that schools provide annual training to teachers on various resources available to support LGBT students both at school and in the local community.
“Equality California sponsored AB 827, which is authored by Assemblymember O’Donnell, because this legislation will enable teachers and school administrators to foster a supportive school environment for all students, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth,” said Rick Zbur executive director for Equality California. “LGBT students have a higher dropout rate than their straight peers and are four times more likely to attempt suicide than their straight peers. Assemblymember O’Donnell’s bill provides teachers and school administrators access to information that supports LGBT youth inside and outside the classroom.”
“Teachers have the power to build an educational environment that is truly welcoming to all students,” said Assemblymember O’Donnell. “This bill provides teachers with the information needed to better support LGBTQ students, creating a safer school environment that all students deserve.”
As outlined in Equality California’s Fair Share for Equality report, LGBT youth are at higher risk of homelessness and related health problems due to social stigma, family rejection, and bullying and violence in schools. LGBT youth are four times more likely to attempt suicide than their straight peers, and 40 percent of transgender youth have made a suicide attempt.
AB 827 will head to the Assembly Appropriations Committee where the legislation's fiscal impact will be analyzed.
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Equality California is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, grassroots-based, statewide advocacy organization whose mission is to achieve equality and civil rights for all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Californians.